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fi<OU 158427 






With a Foreword 

Osmania University, Hyderabad-Deccan. 










COVENANTED Cr r iL SERVICE . . . . . . 4147 

MONDAY THE 24TH FEBRUARY, 1890 . . . . 48 50 


MEERUT ON THE 30TH DECEMBER, 1896 . . . . 54 66 

DIAMOND JUBILEE , . . . . . . . 6770 


18TH FEBRUARY, 1900 .. . , . . . . 8289 

RAMPUR, DECEMBER, 1900 . . . . . . 90110 

1902 .. .. .. .. ..111118 


1908 .. .. .. .. ..119127 


OF MINTO, VICEROY OF INDIA . . . . . . 189 144 

THE INDL* COUNCIL IN 1907 . . . . . . 145147 


UNIVW^SISY, NOVEMBER, 1916 . . . . . .150168 

POEMS .. .. .. .. ..165206 


Nawwab Imadul-Mulk Sayyid Husayn Wgami has j of lat$ years 
not been so much in the public eye. His weak health and advanced age , 
he is nearly 84 now have forced him into retirement. But there was a 
time covering nearly a half-century a pretty 11 long period in the life of 
an individual when the foremost among the leaders of Muslim thought 
in this country looked to him for counsel and support. His speeches 
and addresses which are included in the present valume deal with some of 
the important problems, political and educational, which engaged the 
mind of the Indian public during that period in his life. 

Sayyid Husayn Bilgrami is essentially a scholar and an educa- 
tionist. Politics was never his forte. He was drawn into its vortex 
by pressure of events rather than choice. Even then it was not as an 
active participant in the political struggle that he appeared before 
his country ; it was more as a detached onlooker, counsellor, and a 
disinterested friend of its people. Only on two occasions, does he appear 
to have gone out of his way first, when he addressed his memorable letter 
to Sir Sayyid Ahmad, cautioning him not to be enticed in to the Congress 
politics of the day but to conserve alibis energy for concentratation on 
the education of his community next, when he drew up the famous joint 
memorial to Lord Minto on the eve of the Minto-Morley reforms de- 
manding special representation for Muslims on the Imperial and Provin- 
cial Legislative Councils. 

The attitude which these and a few other writings of his suggested to 
the Indian Muslim community at several critical moments in their politi- 
cal life basin no small measure been responsible for their activity during 
the last two generations. That attitude, it may be observed, has not 
alwaffJSund favour with his Hindu compatriots and even a few among 
his own co-r/ligionists. >A careful and dispassionate examination will, 
however, show that there is much in his* standpoint that needs the earnest 


consideration of everyone, whatever the nationality or creed, who has the 
interest of this country at heart. 

The instinct of self-preservation in man is a powerful impulse. 
He may in a moment of weak benevolence be carried off his feet by catch- 
words and shibboleths, but when crises arise in individual or national 
life and bring realities into play, he is invariably disillusioned. The 
instinct of self-sacrifice may indeed be very strong in him but when he is 
made to realise that it is being exploited by a clever comrdde for his own 
selfish ends, he lets the instinct of self-preservation assert itself 
violently. The writings of Sayyid Husayn Bilgrami will reveal to the 
reader the working of this human trait. In his private and official 
life he has always been serviceable to one and a//, be he a Hindu, Muslim, 
Christian, or Parsee. Never has he been known to have sacrificed 
merit on any racial or religious ground. But in matters political^ his 
advice has always been: " Equate yourself to facts" 

He has held % that without a heartfelt unity among the different 
sections of the Indian population^ India can never hope to command res- 
pect from others and secure her proper place in the comity of nations. 
Says he, addressing a gathering of his co-religionists in 1896 : 

" The different races among whom we live in India are children of the same 
soil and should therefore be like brothers to us and it is our duty to live with them 
in brotherly love and amity ; their success is our success ; their failure our failure: 
they are naturally our friends and supporters whom it would be suicidal to alienate 
from us by any act of our own ; it would, indeed > be both bad morals and bad 

With this expression of genuine friendly feeling towards the sister 
communities of India, there always went a strong conviction that true 
and lasting friendship in politics necessarily implied the preservation 
of one's own identity. The memorial to Lord Minto brings this idea 
to the forefront. He does not believe in lip-loyalty to any particular 
political creed or in unity feverishly attempted on paper to prevent a 
higb-souled patriot from starving himself to death. Unity of hearts is 
what he asks for, and he makes it clear that that is impossible as long 
as the numerically, and economically the stronger of the two leading com- 
munities of India, namely, the Hindus, create new and newfr $ff*rences 
by dwelling mffire on the seamy than on the* brightside of the present or 
past of the Indian Muslims. On this aspect of the inter-communal life 
of India, the Sayyid Sahib is most outspoken. And looking at 


ehtqutred relationship that exists at the prtstnt momtnt fatwtn the 
two sections so soon after the vocijtfous demonstration of love and 
friendship on either side, who can say that the consistent attitude of 
Sayyid Husayn Wgrami is not without its meaning to the people of 
understanding in either camp ? When the hearts do not beat in unison , 
when one of the two par ties k always on the alert to profit ly the other's 
good-will and forbearance, there is bound to be a reaction and the result 
that life becomes limited; the thought of self'aserts itself, and be- 
comes a creed. That seems to be the reason why some of the political 
speeches of Sayyid Husayn Bilgrami are such as they art. 

The educational addresses are of a different* character. They indeed, 
were almost all of them primarily intended for the consideration of his 
own community and dealt with their immediate needs. In discussing 
them however, he has given expression to views which are of universal 
application. The Sayyid is one of those very few living Indians in 
whom are harmoniously blended the knowledge and culture of the East 
and of the West. His attitude in educational matters, therefore, 
cteserws the respectful attention of the exponents of both the Western 
and the purely Eastern systems of training. He has no sympathy with 
those whcrare disposed to idealise and idolise secular training at the ex- 
pense of religion. He emphasises the claims of intellect as well as of 
the spirit with equal force. Keligion without the searchlight of modern 
thought will ease to be a powerful factor in human progress. And 
purely intellectual training divorced from religion is but a soulless 

" Bread-earning" says be, " is unfortunately a necessary pursuit, but man- 
hood is not nourished on bread alone ; the spirit also has to be provided with good 
wholesome food. But not only is manhood not nourished by bread alone ; // is 
neither books nor bread that is needed for the body ; but what is really healthful 
for the whole man is a training that will, as I have said before, lead us to clean 
living and high thinking. This is the essence of culture , for what after all is life 
worth if it is lived as the animals live it in the gratification of mere physical needs 
or in migrations from the blue bed to the brown/' 

Says he again : " We Muhammadans have* received a nobler and more 
sag^LMeritance than our secular literature and homing, namely our God and 
w religion, and were our ctyldren to forget these in the turmoil of worldly pur- 
suits however dtsirabb* thy shall surely perish, since a peoph who hav0 aban- 
doned tbtir God and tbtir conscience an Kb sailors who have lost their mwrings 


and are floating adrift on a tempestuous sea without pilot or rudder" 

" True education" says he In mother place, " should teach us to distinguish 
truth from falsehood and draw valid conclusions from the occurrences of daily 
experience ; it should discipline all our faculties : it should make us acquainted 
with the best that has been said on the topics of importance by the wisest of former 
generations : and fit us to bring this knowledge to bear on the practical conduct of 
life : it should inspire us with a burning desire to be ever moving onward, ever 
taking a step In advance ; It should teach us to be sincere In our daily life and con- 
siderate of others ; it should bring us up to exalt public good above our own, and 
to respect others as the most natural corollary of respecting ourselves" 

Since these last words were addressed to its promoters, the M.A.O. 
College, Aligarh, has grown into a statutory University, and it is 
a matter for serious consideration, how far its courses of study are 
made to conform to this simple and yet great ideal of education. How 
far again will views such as this : 

44 Put not jour faith in translations and do not take your teaching at second 
band y but go to the fountain head and drink deep of its waters." 

or like this : 

" University education is not for all who can pass the preliminary test but for 
those in a position to look forward to a life of leisure among their books or in 
learned research" 

receive hearty response in places like Hyderabad ? 

Apart from their contribution to thought, the speeches of Sayyid 
Unsay n Bilgrami have a literary value of their own. To any reader of 
them, particularly of his incomplete but masterly translation of the 
jQURAN into English, it will be obvious that he has a style which, 
in the polish and purity of diction, and the elegance and precision of 
expression, can be favourably compared with that of any writer of 
English that modern India has ever produced. 

His poems, all lyrical in character which have been included in the 
present volume are interesting reading. Nearly half of them are son- 
nets ; some written in the Petrarchan form, some in the Shakespearean. 
In these, as well as in other songs, the writer has shown a mastery over 
the technique of English verse which is, indeed, surprising. One hears 
in them the echoes of the famous English poets, the " Natures Pontiff 
Priest," " The Mind Bard of Mars," and of him c Who heard the 

stars still quiring to the young-eyed cberabim" A line like : 
Time laughed and would not hear the song. 

coming at the end of every stan^S of his beautiful poem <* April 
in Upper India " reminds us of Spenser 9 s : 

Sweet Thames ! run softly till I end my song. 

which occupies a similar place in "Prothalawion" There is in bis poems 
a lyrical element so true, so sincere, and so apparently spontaneous that 
one hardly fails to note that the ring in them is the ring of a born poet. 
The only regret Is that they are so few. 

When we read these poems , we feel we are face to face with a scholar 
who, tired of the stress and strife of mundane life and having vainly 
striven to resuscitate his " buried youth " seeks to find rest and com- 
fort in sylvan solitudes, even like his Risbi who dwelt happily. 

Favoured of mighty Brabw, 

Close comrade long of rock, and snow and storm. 

Familiar friend of every forest form ^ 

In contemplation calm 
Of 'God's pervading sense in all he saw or felt. 

and listen to the voice of Nature which one hears echoed so sweetly 
through his " Uncertain Harmonies" 

Sayyid Husayn's has indeed been a scholar's life. I w with the 
opportunities he has had in his official career would have so successfully 
stood the temptation to live in the glare of publicity. Lesser minds, 
men of inferior stature disturbing elements at best in politics and in 
literature have so often frantically striven to win popular applause 
and even official recognition. Strangely, these go not infrequently to 
such men. The Sayjid Sahib, however, has always risen superior to 
his environment and considerations of ignorant worldly preferment^ and 
has sought, like a true scholar, all the honour that he deserves in the 
consciousness of having lived a rightous and useful life. 

During the last ten years, he has lived in retirement in his retreat, 
"Rocklands," raised under the shadow of a rocky hillock which hangs 
over on one side, the restless Patheh Maidafi, and, on the other, the 
serejp-z&ervoir of Husayn Sagar. As a link between the past and 
the present, with the sauvity and serenity of the silent^and deep waters 
behind htm and the genial ivormth^ of youth so often displayed on 


that royal field of tournament before him, with his back to the 
Great Rock, facing heroically the onslaughts of advancing years lives 
this sage of Hyderabad supported by his loving and devoted wife* a 
scholar herself, a centre of quiet domestic happiness to his progeny 
and an object of reverence to many like the writer. 


August 1925. 

* Edith Boardman, M. D. (Brux.) ; L. S. A. 1890 : Royal Free Hospital. Reg 
1801. (Retired). &. Hyderabad, d. Captain John Walker Boardman. m. Nawab 
Syed Husain Bilgrami, C.S.I, ed. London School of Medicine for Women. Formerly 
Phys. and Surgeon, H.E.H. the Nizam's Service, Hyderabad. Publn. " Zorah " a 
tale of Zenana life. Club. Lyceum, London. Address, Rocklands, Saifabad, Hyder- 
abad. " The Medical Who's Who." 

Biographical Sketch 

SYED HUSAIN BILGRAMI (afterwards Nawab Ali Yar Khan 
Bahadur, Motaman Jung, Imad-ud-Daula, Imad-ul-Mulk, 
C.S.L) was born at Sahibganj, Gaya, in the year 1842. He 
belongs to an ft old and well-known family of Syeds of Bilgram. 
The family are said to have come to India Vith the Conqueror, 
Muhammad Ghori, as long ago as the commencement of the 7th 
century of the Hijri or the 13th century of the Christian era, the 
date of their settlement at Bilgram being contained in the chrono- 
gram " Khudadad " which gives the date 614 Hijri. They have 
thus been settled there for over seven hundred years. His father, 
Syed Zainuddin Husain Khan, was a Deputy Collector and Magis- 
trate in Bihar, he and his elder brother Syed Azamuddin Hasan 
Khan Bahadur being the two first Muhammadans to have held that 

Syed Husain's earlier education and bringing up were under- 
taken at home where he studied Arabic under a s karned Moulvi. 
In those days among the better class of Muhammadans, the arts 
of wrestling, swordsmanship, a#d archery were considered the neces- 
sary accomplishments of a gentleman, while the standard of horse- 
manship was so high that, as a supreme test, the pupil was required 
to ride and control spirited horses without saddle or bridle and to 
bend them to his will. These and other exercises, inclusive of 
indigenous games of an active and manly nature, Syed Husain 
took part in, thus laying at an early age the foundation of a strong 
and robust constitution which has helped to maintain him in 
sound mental and bodily health throughout his long life. 

At a tender age he lost his mother. This was his first ex- 
perience, as a child, of death, and the impression it made on his 
young mind was so profound that he appears never to have shaken 
it off afterwards. The emotions roused by this loss, suffered as 
it was at the most impressionable period of life, supplied many 
years later the inspiration for one of his English poems. 

At the age of 14, his Arabic tutor having left him, his father 
commenced teaching him English. He was afterwards sent to live 
with his uncle, Syed Azamuddin Hasan, at Patna where he went 
to school, &nd afterwards to a school at Bhagalpur, not far from 
Madahpura, where his father had his headquarters as Deputy 
Collector and Magistrate. He was finally sent to Calcutta where he 
joined the La Martiniere College, going a few months later 
to tl^>?!iich school then known as the Hare Academy where he 
matriculated, securing a, first class. This success earned him a 
scholarship with whteh he entered the Presidency College where 
he again took a first class two years later in the First examination 


in arts. But in the third year his college course was interrupted 
owing to his father taking him to Bilgram for the purpose of ma- 
trimony. Thence he returned a few months later after his marriage 
only to find that he had lost the whole of his third year of instruc- 
tion at the college. He nevertheless went through the course and 
sat for his degree examination at the end of his fourth year in the 
college securing for the third time in succession a class and stand- 
ing very high in the University in the order of merit. 

Already a mature scholar of Arabic, Syed Hnsain had by the 
end of his college career acquired a mastery over the English 
language that is givg n to few Indians to attain. At fche same time 
his great love of books led him to read widely a practice which 
he kept up for more than half a century, thus becoming one of the 
best read men of his time. Nor did he read merely. As a writer 
too he was gifted with that faculty for clear and terse expression 
which lends a peculiar grace and charm to his prose and verse. 

But greater far than any acquired attainments, is the innate 
nobility of spirit and integrity of character that runs in his blood, 
being the heritage of his ancient race, fostered further by the strict 
bringing up given him by his father, which has made him what he 
has always been a man of lofty principles and high ideals with 
a strong sense of duty and unimpeachable uprightness and integ- 
rity coupled wftk a simple, almost puritanical religious faith. 

In 1868 therefore, at the age of about 26, Syed Husain was 
well equipped both mentally and morally for entering upon a 
successful career. Young as he was, his proficiency in Arabic 
secured him a chair of Professor of that language at Canning Col- 
lege, Lucknow. At the same time by his merit as a writer of 
English, he was put in sole charge of the " Lucknow Times," 
a bi-weekly organ of the Talukdars of Oudh. About this time 
took place the interesting controversy about the project of a canal, 
known as " the Sarda Canal," in Oudh. The Government of the 
day were keen on constructing the canal which the Talukdars 
for various reasons believed to be opposed to their interests. The 
case for the Government was strongly advocated in the columns 
of the " Pioneer " by a civilian who was a powerful writer and a 
friend of Syed Husain's, to be opposed in the " Bi-Weekly Luck- 
now Times " in brilliant articles from the pen of Syed Husain. 
The issue of the controversy was entirely in favour of the latter, 
and the Talukdars had the satisfaction of seeing the abandonment 
of the project they disliked. 

In 1872 the great Sir Salar Jung, Minister of tjie Nizam, 
happening to visit Lucknow met Syed Husain and felt greatly 
attracted to him and cordially invited him to come to Hyderabad, 
which the latter didethe next year, 1873. 

The rest of Syed Husain's career is bound up cfcsei^with 
Hyderabad. The surname " Bilgrami," it is interesting to note, 
was adopted by Syed Husain at the suggestion of Sir S&lar Jung. 
He became Private Secretary to the great Minister and in that 

capacity played a prominent part in drafting or revising the letters 
that the Minister from time to time addressed to the British 
Government regarding the Berars, imd which helped greatly 
the cause of the Nizam. He accompanied Sir Salar Jung on his 
memorable mission to England where the Minister was greatly 
"lionised " and feted by the best society. Syed Husain Bilgrami 
had during this trip the honour of meeting and speaking with 
Queen Victoria and also of meeting other distinguished people 
like Disraeli, Gladstone, Lord Salisbury, John Morley and others. 

Syed Hfcsain Bilgrami subsequently became Educational 
Secretary in Hyderabad and also Director of Public Instruction. 
He further held for a time the post of Private Secretary to the 
Nizam and other high and responsible posts, finishing, after his 
retirement, by becoming Adviser to the third Salar Jung, the 
young grandson of his friend and benefactor, the great Sir Salar 
Jung, who was for a short period Minister. During his long service 
in the State extending over nearly fifty years, Syed Husain acted 
at various times as tutor to the late Nizam, His Highness Mir 
Mahbub Ali Khan, as also tutor to His Exalted Highness the 
present Nizam when he was Heir Apparent, and likewise to the 
Sahibzadas, his sons. He received for his services to the State 
at various times, the titles of Nawab Ali YarKhan Bahadur, 
Motaman Jung, Imad-ud-Dowla and Imad-ul-Mulk, as also the 
C. S. I. from the Government of India for his services to the 
British Empire of which more will be said in what follows. 

But it is to his work as an educationist that the State owes 
its greatest debt. For with the exception of the Osmania Uni- 
versity and the new Girls' school, which are recent institutions, 
practically all the other educational institutions in Hyderabad owe 
their existence to Syed Husain Bilgrami. For instance, fifty 
years ago, there existed no facilities in the State for the education 
of the upper classes in Hyderabad. At the instance of Syed 
Husain Bilgrami, a new school was started under highly compe- 
tent teachers this was the Madrasa-e-Aizza which is still in 
working order. Also a High School was started which soon rose 
to the rank of a college with Dr. Aghornath Chattopadhya, a 
man of science, as its Principal. This college eventually became 
the " Nizam College " and was provided with a highly paid Eu- 
ropean staff. By order of Sir Salar Jung, the " Murshidzadas " 
or the relatives of the Ruler of the State, who were hitherto 
brought up without any proper education, were compelled to go 
to the Madrasa-e-Aizza, stipends or scholarships being granted to 
them as an encouragement, and large and well-appointed bullock 
carts or " nibs " employed for their conveyance to and from the 
school. The education of women had its due share of Syed Hu- 
sain's at^tion, and about the year 1885 a Girls' High school was 
founded, being probably tfce first institution of its kind for Muslim 
girls in Inciia. Here a \vell qualified staff was appointed and Arab- 
ic and Persian as well as English were included in the curriculum 
besides such subjects as needlework and domestic economy. The 

strictest purda arrangements were made within the premises and 
special covered conveyances provided for bringing the pupils 
to school. At the same tirrte industrial education was not neg- 
lected. Recognizing the importance of manual and industrial 
training, Syed Husam Bilgrami caused three Industrial Schools 
to be founded at the three principal centres of local industries, 
namely, Aurangabad, Hyderabad and Warangal. These insti- 
tutions did most useful work in helping to revive declining indus- 
tries. In order to encourgage oriental learning and scholarship 
the Dar-ul-Uloom <jr Oriental College was founded which during 
its existence had a most competent staff and produced many good 
scholars of Arabic. The State Library was also started by Syed 
Husain Bilgrami, originally as a repository for valuable old Arab- 
ic books. Afterwards a largo collection of English and Persian 
books was added on, a,nd the Library forms today one of the best 
institutions of its kind in India. One of the aims of Syed 
Husain was to purchase and republish such of the rare and 
valuable books in the Arabic language as were in danger of extinct- 
ion. For the furtherance of this aim he founded with the cordial 
support of Sir Salar Jung, the Dairat-ul-Maarif, a society for the 
preservation and publication of old and valuable books. This 
Society, of whbh he is still the head, is to this day carrying on its 
operations and has done invaluable service to oriental learning 
and culture by editing and publishing, and thereby saving from 
loss or extinction many works of great literary, historical and even 
scientific value. The work of the Dairat-ul-Maarif has now been 
recognised in several countries in Europe where learned collab- 
orators are coming forward to help. The Central Normal School 
for the training of teachers also owes its origin to Syed Husain 

Nor was his fame as an educationist confined to Hyderabad 
alone. He was twice elected President of the Muhammadan 
Educational Conference, on both of which occasions the addresses 
delivered by him from the chair form not only models of literary 
excellence but also contain educational and moral advice of great 
value. The Government of India in recognition of his educational 
experience and great ability, appointed him on the Universities 
Commission of 1908. He had already been a member of the 
Legislative Council and a C. S. I. In 1907 Lord Morley, the 
Secretary of State for India, selected him as a Member of the India 
Council, he being the first Muhammadan to sit on that Council. 
He however resigned his place before the end of his period owing 
to ill health. He retired from Hyderabad service in the end of 
1907 on his appointment to the Secretary of State's Council, but 
on his return from England he was appointed Adviser to the third 
Salar Jung during the latter's short term of office as Minister, 

Syed Husain Bilgrami has never been a " politician " in the 
vulgar sense v of the word. He but rarely*' stepped into the poli- 
tical arena, and whenever he (Jid so, it was only to assist his com- 
munity in orderly progress. Thus the Address of the Muhammad- 


dans to Lord Minto in 1906 which he drew up marked one of those 
rare occasions when he came to the assistance of his community 
in matters political. It was an epoch-making document which 
secured the recognition for the first time of the rights of the 
Muslims as a distinct and important community. 

Similarly, during the World War, when there was danger of 
Muslim loyalty being shaken owing to Turkey having joined the 
enemy, and His Exalted Highness the Nizam conceived the far- 
sighted and statesmanlike plan of issuing a manifesto to them as 
a Muslim Ruler in order to steady them and to induce them to 
remain staunch in their fidelity to British Rule, it was to Nawab 
Imadul-Mulk (Syed Husain Bilgrami) that His Exalted Highness 
turned for the drawing up of the famous manifesto. H. E. H. 
the Nizam's advice came in the nick of time and had a most 
salutary effect on the Muhammadans. Th manifesto was worded 
in a way that appealed to the best sentiments of the Muhammad- 
ans and succeeded in calming them completely. This was the 
last and perhaps the most signal service rendered by Syed 
Husain Bilgrami no less to H. E. H. the Nizam than to the 
British Empire. 

For the reet, it may be said that it is not only by what he has 
done that the value of Syed Husain Bilgranti* to his country 
and to his community may be gauged, but also by what he is. 
Today he is the relic of whaf was best in a past generation which 
gave birth to men of greater force of charecter than modern con- 
ditions seem to be capable of producing. He stands for unwaver- 
ing truth, justice, uprightness and sincerity in a world where these 
virtues are but lightly valued. Amid the sordid struggle that 
surges all round him for pelf, for power or for preferment, he stands 
head and shoulders above the common crowd, calm, serene and 
peaceful, unaffected by these selfish passions. He is the one entity 
to whom those who aim at high ideals in life can still turn for 
inspiration and guidance. 


NOTE. This paper appeared first by instalments in the Lucknovv Times 
of which the author was Editor in 1870-71. 

Scientific Nomenclature for the 

THE Government of Bengal about a year ago appointed a 
Committee to advise on the preparation of medical treatises 
in the Vernaculars. The minutes recorded by two of the 
members of this Committee have been published. The question 
involved is not that of a medical terminology only, but of a termi- 
nology for all the sciences to which modern thought and research 
have given birth. The object aimed at is the determination 
of a system according to which all scientific technicalities may 
be rendered into the Vernaculars. The chief difficulty with 
which a translator of scientific works, indeed of European works 
of any kind, meets is the vast number of terms for which he can 
find no equivalents in his own vernaculars. % To this obstruc- 
tion is mainly due the small number of books that have been 
translated into Urdu and '"the still smaller number that have 
been well translated. 

To obviate this difficulty, as well as to save the vernaculars 
from injuries which may be done to them by unskilful translators 
who either coin new words where vernacular equivalents are 
available, though not known to them, or who misuse existing 
words, and so lay up a store of verbiage which future generations 
will have to unlearn, it is imperatively necessary that those who 
can speak on the subject with authority, should fix upon some 
uniform system which may lead in time to the formation of a 
nomenclature elastic enough to supply our modern scientific 
wants, and sufficiently en rapport with the genius of our own 
languages to be easily incorporated with them. 

Opinion on the subject, however, is so varied and divided 
that no single system that may be determined upon, will be likely 
to give satisfaction to all scholars competent to form an opinion 
on the subject, and receive their assent. We have at this moment 
before us, three different schemes propounding widely different 
views, but each claiming merits of its own, which may not be 
lightly disregarded. One of them is embodied in a long and able 
minute from the pen of that renowned seholar and philologist 
Baboo Rajendro Lall Mitter, a minute containing by far one of 
the protbundest disquisitions on the subject of scientific nomen- 
clature, that we have^read. The second is from the pen of Maulvi 
Tameez Khan Bahadur, one of the most eminent medical men 
of our country, who can speak oil the subject with an authority 

derived from long experience in lecturing on Anatomy and 
Medicine in both the vernaculars of our Presidency, and a constant 
and anxious endeavour, extending over a long series of years, to 
spread the knowledge of the West among his own countrymen. 
The third comes to us from the Inspector of Schools for the Behar 
Division, not in connection however with the proceedings of 
the Calcutta Committee. This latter has the advantage of being 
accompanied by specimens of its practical application, in the 
shape of several translations of scientific works, which we propose 
noticing in due course in the sequel. 

We shall content ourselves at present by indicating very 
briefly the principal features of each of these schemes, reserving 
our own remarks for a future page. 

Baboo Rajendro Lall Mitter, is strongly in favour of trans- 
lation, " not a servile verbatim translation, like a Chinese copy 
with patch and all, " but a translation which will give us words 
serving as signs for the thing signified, and not for any shadow 
of them which a blundering generation in days long gone by, 
might have perceived and perpetuated in their terminology, 
and which still passes current by right of prescription. He divides 
all words for his purposes into six classes, but we will not mar 
the rigid precision and exhaustiveness of his classification by 
making an abstract of it. Here arc his own words : 

" After a careful study of all the technical terms which occur 
in the different sciences usually taught in medical schools, I am 
disposed to think that they are resolvable into six groups or classes 
each having a marked peculiarity of its own. 

In the first of these classes come those ordinary words of 
a language which are occasionally used as technical terms. 

My second class of words are crude nouns and generic names 
of objects, such as malt, yeast, rennet, etc., which, though as 
popular as they well can be, being used principally in art, are of 
a quasi-technical character, and lie on the debatable ground 
between science and ordinary language. 

The third class may be designated as scientific crude name's, 
such as quinine, ipecacuanha, tellerium, selenium, bromine, 
etc. When originally formed, they were in most cases intended 
to connote some quality of the things to which they were applied, 
but their etymological meanings have, in many instances, long 
since been lost, and the words have become what in Sanskrit 
grammar are called c Secondary crude ' or yogarudhi. 

The fourth class is formed of the scientific double names 
of plants and animals, which were originally intended to be ety- 
mologically significant, but which, owing to various causes, have 
in most cases ceased to be so, and now indicate only genera 
and species, as in Jonesia asoka, Coius bhekti, etc., and these, 
like the preceding, may therefore be accepted as crude names* 

The fifth class embraces a number of single words, each 
having a clear distinct etymological meaning and are useful 


only as long as they can convey to the hearer or reader that mean- 
ing ; and yet as they are used almost exclusively in science and 
art, they must be taken as purely* technical. 

The sixth class is formed of compound terms, at least one, 
and in many cases every, member of which has an etymological 
meaning which gives them their vitality and which, it is absolutely 
necessary, should be understood in order that the name may 
convey to the hearer the nature of the object indicated. " 

These six classes of words the learned gentleman purposes to 
dispose of tfius : we are quoting from his own resume of matter 
treated at full length in the body of his note : 

" To recapitulate. The first rule I propose is that all terms 
intended to denote attributes should be invariably translated 
and adapted, but the names of simple substances may be taken 
from the languages of Europe if their equivalents be not found 
in those of India ; and to work out this rule I recommend 

Second. That words of the first class be translated. 

Third. That words of the second class be translated and 
adapted, or improved when necessary. 

Fourth. That words of the third class be transliterated under 
strict rules. * * 

Fifth. That words of the fourth class be transliterated 
uniformly under strict rule* 

Sixth. That words of the fifth class be translated, and adapted 
or improved when necessary. 

Seventh. That words of the sixth class be translated and im- 
proved when necessary, except those which are proper names 
of instruments ; which should be transliterated. 

Eighth. That a set of simple rules be prepared for the guid- 
ance of translators. 

Ninth. That complete glossaries be prepared, giving the 
vernacular equivalents and transliterations. " 

Dr. Tameez Khan, while agreeing with Baboo Rajendro Lall 
as to the value of vernacular terms where available, would not 
advocate the coining of new ones, as he believes such a proceeding 
to be unnecessary. He would prefer the retention of European 
terms wherever vernacular equivalents are not available, instead 
of our classical languages being put under requisition for obtain- 
ing new-coined vocables to supply their place. 

We giy e hi s own words : 

" Speaking from some amount of experience in translating and 
of teaching some of the branches of English medical science, 
in both Urdu and Bengali, I can confidently state that, for 
purposes of translation, European scientific terminology may 
be divided into three different groups. 

Group .first will include such scientific technicalities as are 
well-known, and for which precisely corresponding synonyms arc 
extant in both Urdu and Bengali. 

Group second will comprehend those innumerable scientific 
terms which are met with in English medical treatises, but for 
which apparently no equivalent synonyms seem to exist in the 
vernaculars. More about this group hereafter. 

The third and the last group will consist of those technical 
terms which are met with in English medical works, but for which, 
really and absolutely, we have no corresponding equivalents exist- 
ing in the vernaculars, and this group will contain by far the 
largest proportion of terms. " 

With respect to the first two groups of his classification he 
would advocate the use of vernacular words, f6r the discovery 
of which a Committee of medical men assisted by learned Moulvis 
and Pandits ought to be formed. But with regard to the last 
class he says : 

" With reference to such technicals as I propose to include 
in the third group of my division, viz., those for which literally 
and absolutely we have no existing vernacular synonyms, and 
which, most unfortunately for our translating purposes, are 
by no means insignificant in number, the main question which 
presents itself about them is, whether in vernacular versions 
European technicals are to be retained and made use of in their 
original and primitive condition, and without changing ? or 
whether translators are to be obliged to coin terms compounded 
of vernacular words to interpret and convey their significance ? 
Arguments can be adduced which would plausibly support both 
aspects of these complex questions ; there can be said just 
as much for supporting the idea for coining and compounding 
new names as there can be brought forward cogent reasons to 
bear against a proposal such as this is. For my own part, I do 
not believe that a mere acquaintance with a Sanskrit, or an Arabic, 
or a Persian vocable, can give us any better idea of the object 
or thing itself than if the same were to be expressed either in 
English, or Latin, or Greek, and the student was shown that the 
particular vocable was meant only for a particular object and 
for nothing else. Now, this is precisely the thing that we see 
carried out practically and successfully in the teachings of the 
various departments of our college, and elsewhere too. For 
instance, if we tell a student that the name of a particular muscle 
is " biceps ," or of that particular process " styloid ," or of that 
particular body a " lymphatic gland ," and, without troubling 
him with the etymology of the terms made use of, show and 
demonstrate to him that the name was intended only for that 
particular object and for no other thing, we find the learner to 
know and to remeiftber it well and not confound it with any 
other object." 

On the value of words already coined by previous labourers 
like Dr. Tytle? and others, and the best way of utilising them 
the learned Doctor observes : t 

u However, far be it from me to depreciate their value or 

shew any disrespect and trifle with the really " love's labour '* 
of these earnest and well-meaning eminent oriental scholars ; but 
to utilize and render them subservient for future purposes, and 
also with a view to render the etymology of European scientific 
technicals intelligible to purely vernacular and such other classi- 
cal readers, I beg to suggest that at the heading of each and 
every article of our translations we make use of primarily, the 
original European technicals ; and secondly in the body or text 
of the work we make use of the terms of the first and second 
group ; and lastly, in the form of a foot -note the newly coined 
terms can be inserted ; but under no consideration whatever 
should we attach any degree of importance to these. " 

We are perfectly aware that in thus summarising from these 
two minutes, we have done scanty justice cither to the profound 
research of the one or the practical ancj earnest character of 
the other, but as we must compress a view of all the three schemes 
into our available space, we must now, however reluctantly, 
pass over to the other scheme which deserves special notice, 
as coming from a quarter of the Indian world which we had hither- 
to supposed to be still involved in Cimmerian darkness. 

We confess at the outset that the scheme propounded in 
these Patna papers, and illustrated in the pamphlets that accom- 
pany them, has great attractions for us, as it proposes to facilitate 
scientific culture, and make ft accessible to the masses, by dis- 
carding all difficult and jaw-breaking terms and substituting 
for them vocables taken from the " language of the people as 
it is spoken ;" and could we have persuaded ourselves to believe 
that scientific accuracy and precision would not be sacrificed 
by coining technical terms out of loose and vaguely defined 
household words, we for one should have felt ourselves bound 
to advocate the proposed plan. The simplicity of the method 
is indeed great. You have neither to pore over unwieldly tomes 
of Arabic or Sanskrit lore in order to supply your needs, nor 
yet need you do violence to the simple and domestic character 
of the vernaculars by burdening them with an exotic terminology, 
which can neither be properly transliterated in the native char- 
acters, nor correctly pronounced by untutored Indian lips. All 
that you have to do is to take the foreign terms and express the 
sense of it in the ordinary language of the people. If European 
savants call their heat -measuring instrument, a " Thermome- 
ter," the Patna translator would teach the would-be savants 
of India, tb know it by the word Garmi Nap (Heat measurer). 
The entire credit of this most plausible system, it is fair to state, 
belongs to Rai Sohun Lall, Superintendent of the Normal School 
at Patna. * 

We have already given a summary of the three schemes which 
have yet been proposed for the formation of a scientific nomencla- 
ture for the Vernaculars of India. And when to these we have add- 
ed the system of complete transliteration, which is not so absurd, 
but that it finds an advocate now and then among European 

Educationists of a certain class, who either from " indolent 
impatience " or a " mistaken pride of nationality " would set at 
nought all considerations of "phonetic and grammatical congruity 
in order to secure a doubtful triumph for their mother tongue, we 
shall have as nearly as possible, exhausted all the methods that 
can possibly be broached for the Indianisation of the scientific 
technology of modern Europe. 

All these methods, however, on close analysis will be found 
resolvable into three two of which occupy the position of 
extremes to the third which is their mean. It must be t>orne in mind 
throughout that about terms already in use there \s no difference of 
opinion. The present discussion contemplates only those terms 
for which equivalents have to be found. To find them, we 
must either 

1. Retain European terms and transplant them bodily 
into the vernaculars by a highly wrought system of transliteration. 

2. Translate the same into the vernaculars by making 
unrestrained and liberal use of the mine of verbal wealth buried 
in our classics, or, 

3. Combine these two methods, by the retention of 
some European terms and the translation of others. 

The first may simply be pitched overboard, as unworthy 
of a moment's thought. No sensible Indian (nor any sensible 
European either for that matter) would for a moment agree to 
such a proposition. It would make a mongrel of our mother 
tongue. We can easily imagine our future Pandits not only 
writing a Latinised Hindoostani but mouthing an Indianised 
Latin, and the ideal figure is sufficiently ludicrous and grotesque 
without giving it a corporeal reality. The question in fact amounts 
to this Is English to be the only medium of learning the sciences 
of Europe ? If not, then such wholesale transliterations must 
be consigned to the graves of all the Capulets. 

There is however another, and if possible a stronger objection 
to such a procedure, even granting that we could popularise 
English terms, which we protest is utterly impossible, namely, 
that, cut off from their original sources and devoid of any etymo- 
logical significance to the vernacular scholar, they will always 
continue to be aliens to our tongue, and will be as burdensome 
to the learner as the Chinese Alphabet is reputed to be to all 
but Chinamen. 

Let us turn now to the subject of translation. Aftd here let 
us lay it down as a self-evident truth that in performing our task, 
our motto must ever be Simplicity, Uniformity, Precision. 
Now, what does a c rigid conformity to these three requirements 
postulate with regard to the details of our procedure ; what 
rules does it suggest for our guidance ? We believe they may 
be laid downas follows : % 

1. That simple term? shall be preferred to compound 
terms for denoting simple objects. 

2. That terms connotative of some quality or qualities 
of the things signified, shall be preferred to non-connotative terms. 

3. That whenever an English term and its coined ver- 
nacular version are of exactly equal difficulty to the Indian learner 
and neither claims any special superiority over the other, the 
English term for the sake of uniformity shall be retained in pre- 
ference to the vernacular. 

4. That compound terms shall be preferred for denoting 
compound substances and that they shall convey some know- 
ledge of the components. 

5. That the same class of compounds and derivatives 
shall be preferred for denoting the same class of objects. 

6. That no existing term, whether European or Asiatic, 
which is connotative of a mistaken notion of the nature or pro- 
perties of its significate, shall be retained. 

Perhaps these rules are not exhaustive, perhaps also they will 
need some modification, but they will serve to show us within 
what rigid bounds we must confine ourselves, if we wish to do 
for our own vernaculars, in a short time, what it has taken ages 
to do for the vernaculars of Europe. We have said, however, 
that our motto must be, Simplicity, Uniformity, Precision. Per- 
haps simplicity and precision may be secured, btfk what about 
uniformity in the face of such a discouraging multiplicity of 
vernaculars as we have in India ? How about the Hindi and 
Urdu difficulty of our own little Province, not to travel farther 
from home ? Are we to have two nomenclatures for the same 
Province ? This difficulty does not appear to have been suffi- 
ciently grasped by either of the learned gentlemen whose minutes 
have furnished the cue to our present brochure. 

The matter of Hindi versus Urdu formed sometime ago, the 
subject of a warm public discussion, a discussion in which Syed 
Ahmud Khan, c.s.i., it will be remembered, took a conspicuous 
part. We cannot afford to reopen it here. But of the relative 
merit of Arabic and Sanskrit we must say a few words, because 
the subject involves considerations highly pertinent to the present 

It ~ cannot be denied that both these classics possess inex- 
haustible literary resources, and for precision and elegance of 
expression and power of rigid, philosophical analysis, are without 
a parallel in the world, if we make an exception in favour of Greek. 
But with respect to each other, they are as widely different as 
two languages can well be, as different, as the genius, character, 
aspirations the whole history, in fact, of the two great father- 
races of men whose collective moral, intellectual, and social 
experiences these two languages respectively Record. They are 
both excellently suited for giving expression and fixity to exact 
thinking, each in its own way ; but in the capability of furnishing 
compound qnd derivative vocables to an unlimited extent, and 
submitting its words to all shades of modification of meaning by 
a host of prefixes and suffixes/ Sanskrit is immeasurably 


superior to Arabic. It hurts our vanity as Urdu speaking 
people to make the confession, yet it nevertheless must be ad- 
mitted that the Arabic language is very meagre in this respect. 
It has only one prefix, the article al 9 and only one suffix, the 
vowal ya. Its capability for the formation of compounds is very 
limited, there being only four classes of compounds and two of 
them almost utterly useless for our purposes. It has a fixed sys- 
tem of derivatives, formed by internal vowel changes (the great 
characteristic of the Semitic group of languages) but no elastic 
machinery for the formation of new ones. Such compounds 
as it does admit of forming, cannot, with only one doubtful ex- 
ception, be treated as grammatical units, the fc components still 
continuing to preserve their elementary and individual char- 
acter, and having to be treated as such. 

So much for the Assistance to be expected from this quarter 
in our search after a technology for Urdu. 

We have said that the Arabic language, owing to some gram- 
matical and philological peculiarities cannot afford iis such material 
help in the formation of compounds and derivatives, as can be 
expected from Sanskrit. If space permitted, and if it were 
not extremely barbarous work to transliterate Arabic Poly- 
syllables in Roman characters, we could have adduced a host 
of instances to prove our position, which, however, few who 
know the language, will have the hardihood to contest. And 
now, having convicted this classic (of which the present writer 
confesses to being an ardent admirer) of a clear defect, we are 
in all fairness bound to state the other side. 

It is a well-known historical fact that the Arabs of Spain and 
Syria, were the fathers of the European revival of learning. 
At a time when all the rest of the world was involved in deep 
intellectual gloom, the Arabs were immersed in scientific and 
literary pursuits on the banks of the Guadalquiver and the Euph- 
rates. For centuries Christian students, like Gerbert, (better 
known afterwards as Pope Sylvester) have sat at the feet ot Moslem 
philosophers, and returned to their native country as prodigies 
of learning. For centuries have the works of Averroes (Ibn- 
e-Rushd) and Avicenna (Ibn-e-Seina) formed the texts out of 
which Professors in European Universities have lectured 
to Christian audiences. They were the repositories of Greek 
learning, the preservers and transmitters of Hellenic civilization. 
But for them, Europe would have wanted much of that literary 
and scientific wealth which formed the basis of -her revival, 
and the revival itself would probably have been indefinitely 
delayed. Nor were they altogether such servile imitators of 
their Grecian Masters, as their detractors some times attempt 
to make out. They entered (one by one) into every walk of en- 
quiry. Astronomy and medicine formed subjects of their most 
ardent study. In optics and mechanics they have left discover- 
ies of which post-Baconians can little estimate the merit. In 
the fruitless pursuit of Alchemy, they laid the foundation of the 


true science of chemistry. Djaffar discovered Nitric Acid and 
Aqua regia, and was the first to announce that a metal when 
calcined (oxidised) increases in weight. Sulphuric Acid and 
absolute alcohol were first obtained by Rhazee and a subse- 
quent discoverer first prepared the important substance phos- 
phorus. The measurement of time by the oscillations of the 
pendulum, is an Arab discovery, and the common method of 
solving a quadratic was first taught by an Arab mathematician. 
In the application of Mathematics to Astronomy and Physics 
they led the* way. Of Geology, Botany, Zoplogy, Mineralogy 
they may be said to have laid the foundation. Surgical opera- 
tions were performed by Arab surgeons with skill and dexterity 
and surgical instruments were in vogue. Their travelling pro- 
pensities furnished them a vast pharmacopoeia, and a vast 
accession of remedial agents of which ,they made good use. 
" The Saracens commenced, " says Draper " the application of 
chemistry to the theory and practice of medicine, in the explana- 
tion of the functions of the human body, and in the cure of diseases. 
Nor was their surgery behind their medicine. Albucasis, of Cor- 
dova, shrinks not from the performance of the most formidable 
operations in his own and in the obstetrical art ; the actual 
cautery and the knife are used without hesitation ." 

Ibn-e-Haitams optical discoveries are truly sublime. It was 
he who first pointed out the tfrue nature of vision and demonstrat- 
ed that rays reflected by visual objects impinge upon the retina, 
and the impressions made upon it are conveyed along the optic 
nerve to the brain. He was perfectly aware of the nature and 
rationale of single vision and optical illusions. He was the first 
to discover that the atmosphere is not of homogeneous density ; 
and that therefore a ray of light entering it obliquely must 
follow a curvilinear path concave towards the earth. He applied 
this grand principle of atmospheric refraction to the explan- 
ation of the phenomenon of twilight, the twinkling of stars 
and the apparent vertical reduction of the diameter of the 
horizontal sun and moon. He then determined the height 
of the atmosphere from a further application of these discoveries, 
and fixed the limit approximately at 58 miles. In Mechanics 
and Hydrostatics their discoveries are of equal importance. 
There is at this moment lying on our table a collection of Arabic 
treatises on mechanics, optics, and some other cognate subjects. 
The treatises are very meagre, but references are constantly 
given to other and larger works which are extremely rare espe- 
cially in this part of the world. But meagre as they are, we 
learn from them, that the Arabs had a correct conception of the 
principal mechanical powers, their uses, and tne conditions under 
which power is gained in using them. The book called the Balance 
of Wisdom ascribed to Al .Hassan, we have never had the good 
fortune to see, but if Draper and M. Khani Koff a^e trustworthy 
authorities, the connection between, the weight of the atmosphere 
an<J its increasing density, was plainly set forth by him many 


centuries before Torricelli's well known discovery. He was 
aware that a body loses weight in a dense medium, and understood 
the doctrine of the centre of gravity, and the rationale of floating 
bodies. The pendulum clock, and the Hydrometer were known 
to him, and he applied the latter to the determination of 
specific gravities of bodies. In the science of life, he was a defend- 
er of the doctrine of progressive development, which is only now 
forcing its way among the learned of Europe. Avicenna, in his 
days, gave utterance to dicta on the formation of the crust of the 
earth, which might, be put into the mouth of an A-nsted. 

We have so far trespassed on our space, a well as on the 
reader's patience, in drawing a rough chart of the field of learning 
traversed of old by the Arabs, in order to prove that there is a 
strong and marked affinity between the sciences of Europe and 
of Arabia. That this*fact is of great importance to us we shall 
presently show. 

Our present purpose is to find out the most eligible method 
of translating European scientific technicalities, say into Urdu, 
and Hindi or Bengali. Bengali, the Hindi of Bengal, like 
the Hindi of our own Province, is the direct offspring of Sanskrit, 
which has sufficient elasticity to admit of being manipulated 
by the translator for the formation of new words suited to his 
wants. The new coined terms when once introduced into 
Bengali or Hindi, will soon be 'assimilated to its substance, 
and pass current like borrowed words of earlier date. But 
Urdu will hardly tolerate such intruders, unless a radical change 
takes place in its present constitution, and the Urdu speaking 
people not only gravitate more towards Hindi, but adopt, the 
Nagri alphabet instead of the Arabic. Independently of the pre- 
sent and other considerations, we for one would be glad to see 
this change effected, for we have profound conviction that 
Urdu would be enriched and made more fruitful in direct pro- 
portion to its alliance with and approximation to Hindi, 
and the adoption of the excellent Hindi, instead of the defective 
Urdu Alphabet, would tend more than anything else to a uni- 
formity of language and sentiment among the peoples of India. 
But we are afraid that it will be long, very long, before this most 
desirable consummation is a fait accompli, although of its ultimate 
triumph we have not the slightest doubt. The Semitic element 
will still continue dominant in our mother-tongue, so long as 
the Mahomedans of India do not come to have a juster, and 
less personal and exclusive idea of their position in the country 
of their adoption. When they have learnt to feel more Hindu 
and less Saracen, in other words, when they have come to look 
upon themselves more as Monads in the aggregate mass of Indian 
nationality, and less as an alien element hindering its thorough 
combination, when their affinities shal] have elected for brother- 
hood India ahd the Hindus, not Arabia^ and the Arabs, then 
truly will the dream of a uniform language and nationality begin 
to be realised. But we must ^accept facts even as they are, a<nd 


try to make the best of them. A uniform phraseology for both 
Hindi and Urdu is at present impossible, and the latter 
must look to other sources than the purely Sanskrit. 

Now, of the principle sciences which are to be translated, 
many, as we have shown, have a palpable germ in Arabic, 
and terms necessary to expound at least the elementary stages 
of these, may be exhumed by research. From this source we 
shall obtain a large accession to our scientific vocabulary. Indeed, 
why should we hesitate to work out this mine and appropriate 
the produce .when we find that our present teachers, the Europeans 
themselves, are not ashamed to bear silent testimony to the 
scientific activity of the Arabs, and own their obligations to it, 
by the free use of such words as Alcohol, Alchemy, Algebra, 
Alembic, Zenith, Nadir, Elixir, Syrup, Julep, and a host of others, 
Of the number of words that can be thus obtained no one can 
form a true conception, unless he takes *up any bibliographical 
work like that of Hadji Khali f ah or the Madeenatul-ulum, and 
there learn the range of subjects which Arab speculation has 
from time to time been engaged upon, nor can one make them 
available for use unless he collect together all extant works of 
a scientific nature and place them in the hands of a committee 
of competent scholars. , 

There is still another source from which Urdu might 
borrow without prejudice, and to which Arabic stands largely 
indebted. We mean Greek. This point has not escaped 
the practical good sense and acuteness of Dr. Tameez Khan. 
He believes and with truth, that all the words of Greek origin 
used in Medicine and other sciences, might be adopted with such 
modifications to suit the phonetic requirements of our own langua- 
age, as the old Arab borrowers have taught us by their example. 

In addition to these, Persian will prove to us a powerful 
auxiliary, it will supply us with innumerable words, and being 
germane to both Urdu and Hindi, will stand us in good stead 
when other sources give us words too cumbrous and unwieldy, 
or -when they give us none at all. It has moreover an elegant 
manner of forming compounds and derivatives, so analogous 
to what is already current in Urdu, that even new importations 
from that (only half foreign) source, will soon become even 
as household words. 

To resume : in supplying our wants we are at liberty to 
avail ourselves of 

1. Words of Sanskrit, Arabic, Persian, and European 
origin already in use in our vernacular. 

2. Arabic technicalities to be found in Arabic works, 
but not in ordinary use. 

3. Arabic compounds and derivatives coined according to 
strict rules. , ' t 

4. 'Scientific technicals of Greek or Latin origin, mani- 
pulated to suit the phonetic peculiarities of our language in 


imitation of Arab adoptions of the same. 

5. Primitive, derivative, or compound words borrowed 
from Persian. * 

We shall now give a few instances of each class, to illustrate 
more fully the method we would recommend. 

1. Instances of the first class of words will occur to every 
one. In chemistry, for instance, we have the name of the ordinary 
metals, the words filizz (metal), dhat (do) Kar, ambic (alembic or 
retort), tez-ab (acid). In anatomy and the science of Medicine we 
have Kalb, or dill (heart), reah, shush, or phephra (lungs), tihal, 
pitti or pit (spleen), kabid or jigar (liver), dimagfi (brain), rag or 
nas (vein), buhran (crisis), tap (fever), mudir (diuretic), mushil 
(purgative), mullain (aperient) and a host of others in familiar 
use among Urdu speaking people. In natural Philosophy and 
Astronomy we have < kuvvat, zor 9 or bal (force), harakat or 
chal (motion), wazn, sikl or bojh (weight), hararat or garmi (heat). 
sayarah (planet), sawabit (fixed stars), ufuk (horizon) and so forth. 

2. Words of the second class are such as in chemistry, 
milhyat (saline bodies), duhnyai, (the fixed oils), takhalkhul (poro- 
sity), maye (liquid) or syal (fluid,) bukhar (vapour) and others. 
In Anatomy apd Medicine, we have shir y an (artery), Aasab (ten- 
dons)*, azalat (nnlscles), jamjamah (skull), ajwauf (cavities), godood 
(glands), mashimah (secundiiies), mukhuddirat (palliatives) istiska 
(dropsy), Istirkha or falij (paralysis)* notool (fomentation or rather 
embrocation) and a host of others. In natural Philosophy and 
Astronomy we have : bairam (lever), bukrac (pulley) markaz 
(fulcrum), tadeel (equilibrium), mihvar (axis), irtifa (altitude), 
tul-e-balad (longitude), arz-e-balad (latitude), jaib (sine) and so 

3. We shall give only a few instances of the third kind* 
referring the reader for more to Dr. Tytler's excellent Arabic 
treatise on Anatomy, and the translation of the Aligarh Insti- 
titute, and of Moulvy Kamaloodin of Lucknow, with the reserv- 
ation of a right to veto any word coined in violation of good taste 
or strict grammar. For Thermometer, we have miqyas-ul-hdra- 
rat ; for Resultant of Forces, hasil-ul-kuva ; for di-atomic subs- 
tances, we may coin sunai-oot-tarkeeb for tri-atomic, sulasi-ut- 
tarkeeb and so on. Takasuf may be used for density, meyar 
for test ilm-us-sakoon for Statics, ilm~ul-harakat for dynamics ; 
harakat-e-umoodi for vertical motion, and ufuki for horizontal ; 
wazi-e-ufuki for horizontal position and so forth. More elaborate 
inventions might be adduced, but these are sufficient for our 
present purpose. 

4. Words of this class might be adopted according to models 
already existing. For example the Arabs use karnea for Coruea, 
dia-beetus or %ia-beetus for diabetes ; istaruk for storax, usturlab 
for astrolabe \ isagogee for isagogue ; And proper names such as 
Uklidis for Euclid, Pheethagorus for Pythagoras, and* Suqrat for 
Socrates. We might in imitation of these adopt in like manner, 


murphia for morphia, krolutees, cryolite, kristal or perhaps kristalus 
for crystal analogous to the Greek word ustukhudus already in 
use ; hephrastinu for hyperstone, mrijilus for Magilus. We may 
use diapitus for diaptase, ispar or ispaih for spar, broomin for 
bromine, J r odium for iodine, and so forth. We do not mean to 
say that these identical words, modified in orthoepy in the 
manner we have attempted to indicate (and we confess we have 
not the slightest confidence in our own skill in transliteration) 
should be accepted as final and adopted. We have only given 
instances at random to illustrate a principle namely that 
European words, when borrowed, should bt* subjected to some 
modification to. suit our phonetic requirements, in order to 
preserve them from meeting with much rougher treatment at 
the hands of vernacular scholars, and giving rise to as many 
different forms, Orthoepically speaking, as there are men who 
will use them. We already know what such words as tax, court, 
appellant, respondent, etc., have become in the mouths of the 
common people, and what a variety of uncouth forms they 
have assumed. Their example should be a warning to us not 
to import terms wholesale. We should use a judicious discretion 
not only in the choice of terms, but in giving them such a stamp 
in our own mint as might be best calculated to preserve in them 
a permanent semblance of their originals, and' prevent people 
from passing current coined imitations of their own. 

5. Instances of our fourth class may be given by the hundred. 
We may coin bad-kash for air pump, ab-kash for water pump, 
admipaikar for anthropomorphus, the genus tubuloria may be 
called nainuma, and pachydermata may be called sakht-jild. 
We may translate calyx by burg-e-beroni, corolla as burge-androni 
and so forth. We must again impress upon the reader that we 
by no means offer these as the most appropriate translations of 
the words herein cited. We have given some illustrative instances 
and no more. Perhaps if it came to actual choice, we might 
ourselves prefer the Arabic or perhaps the Hindi renderings of 
these words, according as brevity and precision were better secured 
by this or the other word. 

In pursuing the method we have advocated the greatest 
difficulty, we are aware, will be encountered in dealing with terms 
which cannot be rendered except by tedious periphrases or by 
compounds of forbidding length, which require a great effort 
of memory to retain them. We are well aware that such trans- 
lations will incur a great amount of ridicule, from men who will 
volunteer to criticise the results of a process, the great difficulties 
of which, never having used their own skill at it themselves, they 
are not competent to realise. But even thfe difficulty, we say 
it with confidence, will be obviated, or at any rate kept at a mini- 
mum by strict adherence to the rules we have ventured to lay 
down. When simple^ expressions are available vie must reject 
lengthy compounds even at the sacrifice, to some slight extent, 
of expressiveness and connotativQ* significance. When however 


a vocable of this objectionable character is forced upon us, we 
must accept it as a matter of necessity and try to make the best 
of it. We believe it can tie shown that even awkward Arabic 
compounds, may, sometimes, by the use of a little discretionary 
liberty of treatment be put into a somewhat more acceptable 
shape. To give an example, the word mish-maleea-tun-lessaneea- 
tun, which is Dr. Tytler's substitute for Stylo-glossus (accepting 
it as final) might be turned into lessaania mishmal. The Sublin- 
gual glands are rendered by the good Doctor by an expression 
which would take more time in the utterance than an ordinary 
Military Class Medical student would, in demonstrating their 
existence by the use of his dissecting knife. Bvit we can mater- 
ially shorten it by departing a little from the rules of strict 
grammar and calling the glands, tahtania gudain-e-lessani, or gudd 
tahtal-lessanee. Similarly in many cases in which it is desirable 
to have a short expression easily repeated, it will be found that 
by imitating the formation of Arab proper nouns of the class of 
compounds known to grammarians as the muzji or imtizaji 
and benai, several words may be merged into one grammatical 
whole. Nor need this scandalise Arabic scholars and strict pur- 
ists, for it is not proposed to invade the sanctity of their favorite 
classic. Any solecisms we might be guilty of, they are at full 
liberty to credit? to the account of the unclassic Vernacular Urdu. 

But, as we have already said, we have always the elegant 
Persian to fall back upon in cases of emergency, and therefore 
bona fide difficulties of this kind will but rarely occur. In all 
cases a strict adherence to the rules of good taste and symmetry 
will guide the translator's choice to the best available expression. 
The retention of the original words will be only his last resort 
to be had recourse to in a case of extremity. 

With due deference therefore to the ability and mature ex- 
perience of Moulvi Tameez Khan Bahadur, we are constrained 
to differ from him, when he says : 

" For my own part, I do not believe that a mere acquaintance 
with a Sanskrit, or an Arabic, or a Persian vocable, can give us 
any better idea of the object or thing itself than if the same were 
to be expressed either in English, or Latin, or Greek and the student 
were shown that the particular vocable was meant only for a 
particular object, and for nothing else. Now, this is precisely 
the thing that we see carried out practically and successfully in 
the teachings of the various departments of our college, and 
elsewhere too. For instance, if we tell a student that the name 
of a particular muscle is " biceps, " or of that particular process 
" styloid, " or of hat particular body a " lymphatic gland, " 
and without troubling him with the etymology of the term 
made use of, show and demonstrate to him that the name was 
intended only for that particular object a^d for no other thing ; 
we find the learner to know and to remember it well, and not 
to confound it with any other, object." 


We are not aware of any psychological law, by which crude 
names and non-eonnotative terms cjan be proved to be more 
easily retainable than connotative terms, and in general, terms 
which are significant to the learner and can be ticketed off, if we 
may use the expression, and stored up in the memory under 
some well known head of associated ideas. We do not know 
by what known principle, we can hold the word " biceps," to 
be one easier to remember than the vernacular zat-ur-rasain or 
dio-sira, or the word air pump than bad-kash, to an oriental pick- 
ing up his Anatomy or his Physics out of aji Urdu text-book. 
In fact, foreign words introduced in large numbers would exact 
as much exertion" of memory from the learner, as would be suffi- 
cient for mastering the language itself, not to mention the risk 
we run of over working that faculty and over-developing it to 
the detriment of the other faculties of mind. In the acquisition 
of a science, the part played by a rational Study of its nomencla- 
ture is no mean discipline of the mind. In all the Natural His- 
tory sciences and in chemisty, a rational study of their nomencla- 
ture is of the utmost importance ; and should the long array of 
terms which are therein to be encountered, have no significance 
to the learner except as names for different substances ; should 
in fact these words be not etymologically significant^ and suggestive 
to him, he would not be much wiser, we are afraid, after he has 
crammed himself with this va,st mass of erudition than he was 
before. In fact, it is not possible to imagine that the classifi- 
cations in Botany or Zoology can be thoroughly mastered or chemi- 
cal compounds studied by an Indian, if the foreign names are given 
to him untranslated and intact. Far better, we humbly submit, 
that he should be compelled, as a preliminary step, to acquire 
the elements of the English language before he enters upon 
the study of the sciences of Europe, than that he should 
grope in the dark, in a maze of uncouth foreign names, murdered 
in transliteration, and strive after " more light " in vain. Un- 
der such a system of teaching, even supposing it could be put 
into practice with any degree of success, the knowledge acquired 
would hardly be communicable to others, and our vernacular 
savant will in that respect be in no better predicament than the 
poor University graduate whose inability to make himself in- 
telligible to his countrymen on subjects relating to his foreign 
studies, has passed into a proverb. 

To obviate, however, the difficulty contemplated by the above 
named gentleman, in recording the remarks which we have ven- 
tured to criticise, we would recommend that in publishing trans- 
lations of scientific works, the European equivalents of every 
technical term should invariably be inserted Marginally both in 
the English and the Vernacular characters, and if a student could 
possibly commit to memorv both sets of terms, we would not, 
object to hjs doing so Dr. Tameez Khan is himself strongly 
in favour of such a typographical arrangement, although he 
would reverse the position of the two sets of terras, and would 


put the newly coined ones " in the form of a foot-note " to the 

Let us take a brief glance over what has already been done 
in this matter by others. And here, let us not forget, that the 
first place belongs pre-eminently to that profound Arabic scholar 
Dr. Tytler, whose Arabic translation of Dr. Hooper's Anatomist's 
Vade-mecum is a monument both of his scholarship and his wonder- 
ful perseverance. Owing to the great accuracy of composition 
and thoroughness of assimilation with the older Arabic learning 
which characterise .this work, it has obtained mote popularity 
among Mohammedans, and has done our hakeems more positive 
good than any other translation that we are acquainted with. 
It has almost become a text-book with them, and is read with 
avidity. In speaking of Dr. Tytler's " labour of love " Dr. Tameez 
Khan justly observes,: " That erudite scholar Dr. Tytler, to 
make Arabic language (sic) as the medium of communicating 
European Medical Science to Eastern lads, not only translated 
in chaste Arabic the entire volume of Hooper's Anatomists Vade 
mecum under the somewhat poetical title of Anees-ool-moshur- 
rehin, but with a degree of perseverance and diligent study of 
Arabic Medical Literature, which assuredly commands our highest 
respect, has appended to the work in question a glossary of scien- 
tific technical terms of one hundred and five pages, each column 
of which has a diglot of twenty one technical terms. Thus we 
find that Dr. Tytler has been so far successful as to have collect- 
ed fully more than twenty two hundred terms from Anatomy, 
Physiology, Pathology, Medicine, and Surgery, etc., with their 
corresponding synonyms in Arabic ; and remember that by far 
the greatest portion of these have been coined and compounded 
seemingly by Dr. Tytler himself ." And a little further on the 
Doctor remarks : " I hope that I shall not be charged with 
hyper-criticism when I say that the rendering of the technicals 
there, is anything but well selected and judicious." 

We agree both with the compliment and the criticism. It 
is impossible to regard Dr. Tytler's labours lightly, or his services 
to the oriental languages, with anything but profound respect 
and gratitude. But at the same time, it will be difficult to accept 
all his renderings. His choice was not always happy. Thus 
for example, for Hydrogen he has a long Arabic periphrase 
meaning " Water-producing air," for Nitrogen Nitron-producer 
and for Oxygen, Acids-producer ; while the fact is that for 
elementary bodies of this nature, we must have the briefest 
expressions, and as far as possible, single words, or none at all ; 
not to speak of the inaccuracy of some of the expressions judged 
by the light of our ^present more advanced knowledge of chemical 
phenomena. Similarly with regard to many of the anatomical 
and physiological terms, there is ample room for improvement, 
upon Dr. Tyller's selections. There is no doubt, however, that 
Dr. Tytler's labours will be of , the utmost use and prove a great 
help to the future translator. He will find in the Doctor's 


work a vast mine of verbal wealth, which with a little skilful 
handling, will yield him a rich return. 

The specimens from Patna run exactly into the opposite 
extreme. Where Dr. Tytler errs in choosing long-winded circum- 
locutions difficult to pronounce, and still more difficult to re- 
member, Rai Sohun Lall takes us by surprise with words so 
absurdly trite that, were they not prefaced by an explanation of 
their serious import they would be taken for burlesque imitations 
intended to ridicule the teaching of science to the people of 
India. We have great respect for Rai Sohiyi LalPs knowledge 
and ability, and have great faith in his earnestness of purpose. 
As an Urdu scholar we think, he has struck out a path for 
himself in which he is sure to have many followers. As a 
writer of Urdu prose, the few specimens we have seen, prove 
him to have a perfect mastery over the language. Yet we are 
constrained to remark, that his literary etcentricities will meet 
with but little toleration, and his rice-water method will find 
but few advocates* We are ourselves strongly in favour of 
giving preponderance to Hindi words in Urdu composition 
as the surest means of imparting expressiveness, vigour and 
elasticity to the style, and we yield to none in execrating the 
inflated Perso-Arabic Urdu, if we may use the expression, which 
the Lucknow School of writers has brought into vogue. But 
at the same time we feel ourselves bound to protest against the 
vulgarisms of Rai Sohun Lall, we protest against the use of 
a language fit only for the boors of our villages and never used 
in polite conversation either by Hindus or Mahommedans. In 
the small list of technical terms published by him, there are 
perhaps more inaccuracies and absurdities than in the whole 
glossary of Dr. Tytler. While admitting that some of his trans- 
lations are as apt and appropriate as could be wished, we wonder 
at the hardihood of proposing the following renderings, at once 
wanting in precision and accuracy, and so trite and common- 
place as to be totally unfit for the requirements of science. 

Resultant phal (fruit). 

System of forces in equilibrium Mile tule-hue-zor, ( Joined- 

balanced-f orces ) . 
Plane khet (a field) 

Exact science jani-hite-biddya (known knowledge). 
Experimental science -jachi-hui-biddya (tested knowledge). 
Elementary body nirali chiz (a thing unique or strange). 
Definition pahchan (a mark or sign). 
Axiom jani'hui bat (a known speech). 
Circumference gherachakkar (a surrounded, or perhaps 

surrounding, roundness or round tiling). 
Right angle kharra kona (a standing corner). 
Relation lag, lagao % (connection). 
Acutp angle sukra kona (a shrivelled corner). 
Equilateral triangle barabar bazoo tikhut (equal-armed 

three line). 


And many more, the absurdity of which is patent in the face 
of them. These words havp not the slightest chance of being 
understood beyond the pale 1 of Rai Sohun LalPs personal in- 
fluence. Rai Sohun Lall has put himself to the trouble of ap- 
pending in two more columns, Arabic and Sanskrit equivalents 
of the technicals he has selected as specimens, and wishes us to 
believe in the great superiority of his words over these. Of 
the Sanskrit terms we cannot speak with any degree of confidence, 
we believe however that they are generally correct, but he has 
not been so happy in his Arabic renderings. Soijie of them 
are hardly fair specimens of the capabilities of Arabic, and can 
be easily replaced by other and more appropriate terms taken 
from that language or from the Persian. 

With Rai Sohun LalPs Arabic, however, we will not quarrel. 
We will let him translate musallas into (made three) and jaib 
into " pocket " and hdve his laugh at them. But his mongrel 
renderings of scientific terms we cannot pass over in silence. 
His dourta-bijli-bal (running lightning power) will never serve 
as substitutes for Voltaic and Frictional electricity. To popu- 
larise science is one thing, to make its literature vulgar and absurd 
is quite another. Most of the Arabic and Sanskrit words which 
he has condemned will be, we are afraid, much better understood 
by the Urdu and Hindi speaking peoples respectively than his 
own uncouth renderings, and the great end of precision will be 
better served. In justice, however, to Rai Sohun LalFs scheme 
it must be admitted that he sometimes displays great ingenuity 
in his manufacture of terms ; and his manner of writing on Scien- 
tific subjects, though not free from a certain degree of affectation 
and still capable of much improvement is above the average 
of everything of the kind we have yet seen done in the Urdu 

Another translator, who deserves honourable mention, is 
old Moulvy Kamalooddin of the old Lucknow Observatory. 
He translated about fifteen works under the direction of 
Colonel Wilcock, the Superintendent of that Institution. The 
following is a list of twelve of them. 

1. The Mechanical powers from a treatise published in 

the Library of Useful knowledge. 

2. Astronomy Library of Useful Knowledge. 
8. Hydraulics do do 

4. Pneumatics do do 

5. Optics do do 

6. Heat do do 

7. Lord Broughams' Discourse on Natural Philosophy. 

8. A Treatise f>n Mathematical Instruments. 

9. Do Magnetism. 

10. Do Chemistry. 

11. Brinkjey's Astronomy. 

12. A Treatise on Centrifugal Force. 

The rest of his translations* are of other than scientific works. 


Most of those works, if we are not mistaken, were made over to 
the local Government. They were sent to the late Director 
of Public Instruction for his opinion.' The translations however 
having been made thirty years ago, the science taught in them 
is necessarily much out of date. The Director of Public Ins- 
truction, if we are not mistaken, for this reason, and because the 
works were very brief epitomes of science which in the absence 
of other books would form difficult and unattractive studies 
for Indian youths, did not recommend their republication. He 
thought at the same time that they would be very useful in 
preparing more modern treatises adapted to *the present state of 
science. Of their merit we are hardly competent to give an 
opinion, for the very simple reason that we have not seen the 
most important of them. We have had the pleasure, however, 
of perusing the Moulvy's translation of Brinkley's Astronomy, 
and we are of opinion that with a little revision the book will 
become a serviceable one to oriental readers, and that it will be of 
invaluable use to future translators in finding Arabic equivalents 
for English Astronomical terms. Its style is full of those faults 
which it is the object of a good translation to avoid. It is but 
just to add that the old Moulvy has received, in consideration 
of his literary labours and his long service under the kings of 
Oudh, a handsome reward from Government. * 

Similar remarks apply to the Mathematical treatises of 
Professor Ram Chunder. *His Translation of Boucharlat's 
Principles of the Integral and Differential Calculus which was 
published at Delhi in the year 1845, is now out of print, and so 
little interest have works of this nature for Indian scholars, that 
it is not likely to be republished for a long time to come. 

A word about translation in general and we have done. It 
appears to be, or rather to have been, the general belief until very 
lately, that to translate from a foreign language, it was enough 
to substitute words of our own language for the foreign words 
and present it to the public, somewhat in the fashion of English 
paraphrasing in which Entrance Course Key-makers and dealers 
in cram are so skilled. It was thought perfectly immaterial 
whether the sense was conveyed along with the words, or left 
behind. The translator having brought out a book in Urdu 
characters, thought he had done enough and could not have 
done more. It never enterd into his calculations, that he would 
have to follow every copy of his book in order to explain it to the 
reader not learned in his Hindustani. He never thought that 
his work would be like the printed pictures of gods and goddesses 
which itinerant Brahmins exhibit in streets and way-sides, to 
crowds of edified spectators, and sing out the jrnerits and mighty 
deeds of each god and goddess as they pass in review. Dr. Fallon 
of Patna in his introductory remarks on Rai Sohun Lall's transla- 
tions justly observes : " t 

" Scientific works hardly yet exist in the vernacular. Arith- 
metic, with elementary Geometry i and Algebra, and a little 


Natural Philosophy, represent the whole of science. In Physical 
and Social Science and in the higher branches of Pure and Mixed 
Mathematics there is an almost total blank. Even within this 
narrow range, which comprehends all that has been yet accom- 
plished, it would be difficult to name ten works of real merit. 
The vernacular Hindustani in which European Science has been 
yet presented for the most part to the native mind, may be 
characterised as at once meagre and uninteresting, faulty in 
arrangement and expression and frequently unidiomatic and un- 
intelligible the performance, generally, of ill-disciplined and ill- 
informed minds, driven by a superficial knowledge of their sub- 
ject, and want of command of their vernacular to the convenient 
shelter afforded by literal and vaguely expressed translations of 
the text." 

It is a happy sign, t however, that a more correct view of the 
objects of translation is beginning to gain ground. It is a happy 
sign that good translations are beginning to be better prized and 
their merits understood. To quote again from Dr. Fallon, the 
translator's task is far from an easy one " Even the preparation, " 
he says, " of an elementary work of science needs the comprehen- 
sive grasp which sees the simplest truths in the light of the most 
advanced knowJcdge of the day ; and to this grasp must be 
joined imagination and power of expression to represent clearly 
perceived truths to other minds <vith vivid clearness and in a 
connected form. It is painful to see pupils and teachers wasting 
their lives, for the most part over words merely. Without suit- 
able books in their vernacular and without teachers able and 
willing to supply this want, the phenomena of nature are to them 
without meaning or interest. This waste of intellect and of the 
emotions should be very unsatisfactory to sympathetic minds 
who know by experience the value and enjoyment of mental 

Moral and Religious Education 

"The first condition of human goodness is something to love, the 
second something to reverence. GEORGE ELLIOT. " 

I HAVE placed the above aphorism taken from the greatest 
humanist of the present century at the head of this paper 
because it records in a few simple, pithy words the gist and 
essence of all that can be said or written on the subject of 
moral and religious culture for all times. In discussing the 
practical issues raised in the important public document of 
which this paper is intended to be simply a review, it is well to 
remember that the sentiments of Reverence and Love are the 
two elements at the root of all that is divine in man, and that 
to neglect them in any work that undertakes to raise a people in 
the scale of humanity, is like venturing into a cavern of prime- 
val darkness without the help of a lantern to light our way. 

The blessings that have resulted from the educational work of 
the last 30 years are well nigh incalculable. But after all the 
commonplaces on the subject have been affirmed, the fact re- 
mains that immense as has been the good done, there is a resi- 
duum of evil which it is impossible any longer to neglect. The 
letter of the 31st of December came not a day too soon, for the 
fact that we were drifting in a crooked direction was beginning 
to be observed by most thoughtful men in the country, and it 
was felt by those who were directly concerned in the work of 
education, that independently of their personal views on reli- 
gious matters, a godless system of bringing up the youths of the 
country was sure one day to land us in disaster. 

The indictment against our present system loses little of its 
gravity by the cautious and temperate language in which it is 
formulated in the letter. It is undeniable that the extension of 
education on its present lines has resulted in the growth of ten- 
dencies unfavourable to discipline and reverence in the rising 
generation. It must also be admitted that our schools and col- 
leges aim more at enabling their pupils to pass examinations 
than " at training them to those habits of self-respect whiqjl 
find expression in submission to authority, temperate language 
and deference to the judgment of those old& than themseves." 
They do not foster habits of manliness, self-reliance and self- 
control. Finally they entourage not simply a revolt against the 
religions of their fathers, but against all religions that, armed 
with spiritual sanction, attempt to impose disciplinary restraints 
of, any kind on their followers. ' 


To begin with the matter of discipline, I turn to the nearest 
dictionary and find that discipline comes from the Latin word 
disciplina meaning instructron, teaching, showing that the two 
ideas of learning and strict subordination and subjection to law, 
and the further idea of chastisement for any breach thereof, are 
bound up with the etymology of the word. In fact education is 
degraded into simple instruction when discipline is not observed 
discipline in the highest and widest sense of the word, discipline 
that aims at training youths into habits of self-respect, self- 
knowledge and self-control. " Give self-control," f says Charles 
Buxton, " and you give the essence of all well-doing in mind, 
body and estate. Morality, learning, thoughts, business, suc- 
cess the master of himself can master these." Above all, dis- 
cipline properly applied ought to tend to the creation of a sense 
of duty. Without attempting an exhaustive classification of all 
that school discipline ought to exact in order to attain these ends, 
the following may be enumerated as essential : (1) reverence for 
authority, (2) regard for prescribed formalities, (8) the observance 
of genteel manners, (4) punctuality, including punctuality in the 
performance of prescribed tasks, (5) thoroughness of work, (6) 
repression of selfish propensities, (7) temperate speech, (8) truth- 
fulness and finally (9) justice. 

As thus defined, hardly any discipline worthy of mention is 
enforced in our schools and colleges. Pupils are left much to 
themselves. The fever of passing public examinations maintains 
a sort of strain on the faculties of our school-going youth, pro- 
ducing results that are apt to be confounded with the results of 
discipline, but the two things are wide apart. The strain of com- 
petition has a distinctly unhealthy effect both on body and mind. 
Earlier in the century when there was no competition and the 
phenomenal eagerness for university passes had not made it- 
self manifest, Bengal enjoyed a short Augustan era of true culture 
with a distinct disciplinary effect on the minds of its fortunate 
recipients which we look for in vain in later times. A few bril- 
liant teachers, the like of whom India has not again seen, had 
gathered round them a crowd of eager disciples whose life was riot 
saddened by the prospect of periodical public examinations. 
Out of this contact sprang into existence a circle of men who 
spent their leisure in the cultivation of letters, a small republic 
which counted among its numbers men who have left their mark 
on the country. Degumber, Mitter, Kishoy Chand Mitter, Ram 
Gopal Ghose, Ram Pershad Rai, Kishto Dass Pal are all gathered 
to their fathers. Rajender Lall Mitter and Shamboo Churn 
Mookherji, who are spared to us, tower head and shoulders above 
any that our present system has yet produced. 

It may, therefore, be safely inferred that the laxity of 
discipline in our schools conjoined with the unhealthy strain of 
competitive examination, is responsibfe foj our having hitherto 
obtained such poor results. * 

The tendency to irreverence that is perceptible in the rising 


generation, is described as the inevitable result of the emancipa- 
tion of thought which it no doubt is. , It is, in any case, quite a 
feature of our schools. The fact is that great scientific truths 
the results often of careful research and elaborate ratiocination 
are, in the modern juvenile literature of the day, simplified to the 
level of the meanest understandings and furnish pabulum for the 
text books used by our children. Some of these truisms are 
opposed to old world beliefs still held sacred by the passing genera- 
tion. Schoolmasters are not wanting who parade them before 
their pupils iu ridicule of such prejudices. Children are quick to 
find out the weak points of their seniors : love of effect and self 
importance do the rest. Not having been trained in well-bred- 
self-restraint, they flaunt their newly acquired paradoxes before 
their elders at home, and the more offensive they are, the greater 
the reiteration and pertinacity with which they are plied. It is 
thus probably that the sentiment of revefrence receives its first 
death blow. But these beliefs, so easily ridiculed, are mixed up 
with other and more serious matters. Superficiality admits of 
no let or hindrance to its scepticism. From prejudice to pre- 
judice, from belief to belief, from dogma to dogma, it soon runs 
over the gamut of all things sacred. Compared to the arduous 
process of thinking for oneself and weighing both sides of the 
arguments, how simple it is to admit once for all that all doct- 
rines tending to put restraints and restriction on human liberty 
and hedging in personal rights with corresponding duties, must 
be false 1 How cheap a way of establishing a reputation for 
philosophy and wisdom ! How plausible a pretence for doing 
away with self-restraint ! 

There was a time within my own memory when parents taught 
their children lessons in breeding and morality that would take 
our modern race of school going-boys with surprise. The ob- 
ligation of veracity was vigorously enforced with the birch and 
the rod. Prevarication was more severely punished as a lie 
within a lie. Hyperbolic speech was discountenanced as the 
parent of inaccuracy and ultimately of deliberate falsehood. 
Boys were not suffered to contradict their elders, or speak to them 
in aught but a deferential tone. To talk loud or to laugh loud 
or to scratch, or to indulge in audible tokens of repletion or to 
gape or yawn visibly in company was a sin. They were not to 
order about the servants of their parents, and if any service was 
needed of them, it was to be sought as a favour and in deferential 
language. Justice was enforced strictly between them and 
their playmates among the sons of the servants, who were often 
treated to the same dainties which fell to the lot of the former. 
Sneaking and carrying tales met with severe i^buff. Cruelty to 
animals was discouraged. No boy ever dared leave the com- 
pound without the permission of his father. Boys who spent 
their pocket money in procuring little delicacies from the bazaar, 
were warned that it was an ill-bred habit, a slur on the comfort 
and caretaking of the parental rotff. They were not to accept 


presents from friends without permission. Evidences of un- 
selfishness met with warm Approval. Generosity towards their 
playmates was encouraged so long as it was at their own expense. 
They were taught to consider nothing in the house that was not 
expressly given them as their own. Fewer pains and penalties 
were attached to delinquencies in the domestic school room 
than to moral turpitude. In fact a book might be made out of 
the unwritten code of morals and manners and discipline that 
accompained their inculcation in well-bred Mahomcdan and for 
that matter in well-bred Hindu families, that migh;t lighten the 
labour of some of the Bengal Professors who have kindly vol- 
unteered to teach us breeding. 

But now the school master is abroad, and he has apparently 
ceased to teach at home either well-bred families are getting 
extinct, or parents having no time to attend to their children, 
consign them to the tfender mercies of the school master. Cer- 
tain it is that we are reduced to learning manners from foreigners. 
Indian youths are as noted now for gaucherie and undignified 
demeanour, to use very mild expressions, as they were at one 
time for their self-respect and self-possession in the presence of 
strangers O ! tempora ? ! Mores ! 

Indians and Indian Civil Service 

IN throwing together the substance of the 'following pages I 
have followed no rigid line of classification. Such divisions as 
I have made of the subject sometimes run into one another and 
pretend to no " scientific frontier. " I have simply taken some 
of the heads of the enquiry and endeavoured to discuss them to 
the best of my ability. I have commenced with the Uncovenanted 
Service as the first step in the great administrative hierarchy, 
and have then gone on to the higher services, dealing without any 
strict order of precedence with a few of the side-issues that arise 
out of them. To exhaust all the issues was more than I could do 
within the space at my command. 

The claims of the natives of India to be represented in the 
administration of their own country have always oeen conceded 
by the ruling power. Both the justice and expediency of the con- 
cession were seen from the first, and have never at any time been 
denied. A certain number of appointments in the Executive 
and Judicial services were always reserved for them, and al- 
though administrative and legislative progress and the introduc- 
tion of codes of procedure and other reforms ousted a certain 
class of officials from what used to be their special preserves 
they were ousted only to be replaced by another class of officials 
better versed in the modern methods and appliances of Govern- 
ment, far purer, and, by culture and education, better fitted to 
justify the ways of the rulers to their countrymen and soften some 
of the asperities of foreign rule. Since then the Uncovenanted 
Service has risen steadily in public esteem and popular confidence, 
and has done yeoman's work for Queen and country. Some 
of its members have raised themselves to positions of eminence by 
their ability and force of character, and would have risen still 
higher, if the doors of the higher service had not been closed 
against them. The Imperial Government has endeavoured to 
throw open a few prize appointments to such men, but they are 
too few in number either to satisfy legitimate Indian aspirations or 
reward all the deserving ones of the service. 

There is another anomaly. First class Deputy Magistrates, 
Deputy Collectors and Extra Assistant Commissioners are vested 
in the Bengal Provinces with the full powers of a Magistrate and 
Collector, and in many instances are placed in charge of im- 
portant sub-divisions ; and in that capacity, or as Assistants in 
large and populous districts, turn cut as much and as efficient 


work as the Civilian Magistrates, or Collectors under whom they 
serve. Yet, whereas, the horizon of their ambition is bound- 
ed by a paltry pension of three or four hundred rupees, garnished 
in some instances with a modest decoration, their civilian col- 
leagues can look forward to a long vista of honours and promotion, 
ending sometimes in a Grand Cross and a well paid sinecure in 
Downing Street and, may be, higher possibilities beyond. Un- 
covenanted Indians have, however, no occasion to grudge their 
more fortunate brethern either the Grand Cross of honour or the 
snug sinecure, for in the majority of cases they arc the reward of a 
very high order of "merit, and have been earned by long years of 
self-denial, and hard, honest, sterling work in ,a strange climate 
and among an alien people. Rather let them urge that if there 
are men of talent in this country, if there is ambition in the breasts 
of her children, it is meet that such talent and ambition should be 
provided with a field >f activity in an honourable career in the 
service of their country. Let them insist that tried merit and 
proved loyalty shall be recognized and suitably rewarded, for 
therein their interests and the interests of their rulers are identi- 
cal, since no civilized Government, situated like the British 
Government is in India, would willingly despise the one or 
neglect the other. 

How then 'are the prospects of the Uncovenanted Service to 
be expanded V Two plans occur to me at this moment, either 
of which might be adopted without detriment to the vested 
rights of other services. 

The first and simplest plan is to tack the Statutory Service on 
to the Uncovenanted, and, instead of recruiting the former by 
nomination, which is under the best of circumstances open to 
the suspicion of favouritism, to let it be recruited from the ranks 
of the Uncovenanted Service. 1 would select so many every 
year, or every two or three years as the case may be, in each 
Province, and raise them to Statutory rank, but I would let the 
selection be guided by certain definite principles. Length of 
service, for example, should not count for much, but I would 
have none that did not come up to a certain standard of social 
respectability, I would rigidly exclude men of low caste. 
I would, as a rule, look with suspicion on men who have risen 
from what in Bengal is called the? " Amlah " or " Ministerial " 
ranks but in exceptional cases I would not taboo them altogether, 
for some brilliant careers have been hewn out of office and court 
subordinates, although they live in an atmosphere not very 
favourable to the growth of clean official character. 

These matters being understood, I would be guided solely by 
proved merit. I do not think it is much use having old and 
superannuated mOn about to retire under the 55 years rule. 
That would simply make a " happy hunting ground " of the 
Statutory Service. I would take the younger men in the hope 
of making something out of them. Then as to the 'prospects, I 
would have the pay a littl<* higher than in the Uncovenanted 


Service, but other things being equal, a little lower than that of 
the Covenanted civilians. I think three-fourths is a good pro- 
portion, or even two-thirds, I would make them eligible for 
some of the appointments in the Customs, Salt, Opium, Postal, 
Accounts and Registration Departments hitherto reserved for 
Europeans. With regard to their Leave, Absentee allowances 
and Pension, I would make no change. The rules now in force 
are favourable enough. 

It will be seen that my remarks bear mainly on the Executive 
branch of the. service, for on the Judicial side the Uncovenanted 
Service has excellent openings and cannot fairly ask for more 
although for the* sake of uniformity it would be expedient no 
doubt to dovetail both branches of the Uncovenanted into the 
Statutory Service, and classify all the Higher Judicial function- 
aries of the subordinate service, such as Small Cause Court 
Judges and others under the latter. 

With regard to the recruitment of the Uncovenanted Service, 
I believe, in the old clays custom varied in the various Provinces. 
In Bengal, the Lieutenant-Governor appointed Deputy Magis- 
trates and Deputy Collectors direct. The selections were, I 
believe, on the whole statisfactory. It is true that Calcutta 
was much exercised at one time early in the century by the spec- 
tacle of here a butler or there a fiddler dispensing* patronage, but 
those were days of princely civilians, whose very butlers or fiddlers 
were respectable. I have no "doubt that gentleman, if he is not 
purely mythical, made a good choice and conferred his master's 
favours on men who never gave the latter cause for regret. How- 
ever that may be, it was not customary in Bengal, as far as I 
know, except in rare instances, to raise men from the ministerial 
ranks. In Oudh on the contrary, and in the North-West Provinc- 
es, I believe, this was long the rule, and appointment direct* the 
exception. I believe this led to some very impure and objection- 
able men getting in. In my humble opinion the system is a 
mischievous one, and tends to lower the status of what is and 
ought to be a most honourable service. My personal impression 
is that in my time official opinion on this subject in Oudh was 
divided, but the best men were, I think, for direct appointments. 
I would recruit this and every other service of equal or higher 
rank by a combination of the two systems nomination and 
competition. I think each administration might keep a list of 
applicants, and make a selection out of them. The men thus select- 
ed should be allowed to compete for the vacancies in the service 
every year, or every two or three years as the case may be. The 
details of the selection and the competition can be easily work- 
ed out, but I think it would be expedient to have the examining 
body organized at Calcutta, either under tile auspices of the 
University or one of the Secretariats. It will be seen further 
on that I have suggested a* similar plan in all essential points for 
recruitment? of the higher service, as far at leasf as Indians 
are concerned. 


The alternative plan that I have to suggest is the total aboli- 
tion of the statutory system, coupled with the throwing open of 
some of the higher appointments mentioned in the preceding 
paragraph to such members of the Uncovenanted Service, as are 
of good social standing and proved merit. The question, whether 
or not under either system the nominees shall be subjected to 
some sort of test, is of secondary importance, and may safely be 
left to regulate itself by Departmental rules and requirements. 
A recruit from the subordinate service who has passed the usual 
Departmental tests of that service, and has been , promoted to 
statutory rank on evincing administrative ability, need not be 
subjected to a fresh test, unless the duties assigned to him involve 
familiarity with special subjects not embraced in the tests through 
which he has already passed. 

As to the question of race, I am afraid it looks very odd, that 
we should in the sam breath plead for a complete elimination 
of it in our interest when it threatens to exclude us from one 
service, and seek its reinstallation in the same interest, when 
it threatens to include people of mixed blood in another service 
which we wish to reserve to ourselves. To be consistent we 
must either accept the principle in both cases or reject it alto- 
gether. It woi^ld however be unjust to the pure Indians of the 
country if this service were thrown open to Eurasians and 
domiciled Europeans unless they chose to accept the name and 
position of " Indian " and abided by it for better or for worse. 
There is no hardship in granting them rights co-extensive with 
those of pure Indians, but it is hard on the Indians and unfair, 
to allow them the rights and privileges of both Indians and 
Europeans. Our Eurasian and Anglo-Indian friends should not 
act the part of the ostrich in the Arab story that refused to carry 
burdens, because he was not a beast, and refused to fly because 
he was not a bird. They should choose one role and abide by it. 

Between eighteen and twenty one years is a fair limit of age 
for admission to the subordinate service, but I would relax the 
rule in the case of professional men, whom it may be desirable 
to encourage to enter the service. The literary test ought to 
include a fair knowledge of at least one Oriental classic and of 
English and a thorough familiarity with the Vernacular of the 
Province. I would rigidly exclude men of weak or rickety 
physique, and I would insist on a fair record of previous moral 
character. I think the custom of enforcing a short probation 
between nomination and substantive appointment has a very 
wholesome influence on the recruits, and I would retain it except 
perhaps in the case of professional men, whose merits and 
capacity may be presumed to be well known to the local 
authorities. Of course under my system there would be no 
probationers in the Statutory Service.* Two hundred rupees per 
month during'probation is not excessive f6r probationers of the 
subordinate service. I certainly would not offer them less. 


I would leave the different Administrations free to recruit 
their subordinate and Statutory Service from the people living 
within their jurisdiction, reserving * however for the Imperial 
Government at headquarters the right of making direct appoint- 
ments in exceptional cases. We may safely trust the high 
character of our officials and the vigilance of the public press to 
prevent jobberies, although for that matter jobberies will occur 
now and then under the best regulated Governments. And 
after all, what is stigmatised as a job by disappointed place- 
seekers may be a mere disregard of red-tape in a higher interest 
by authorities able to set it aside with imputiity. 

The Statutory Service created under 33 Vic. Chapter III, 
section 6, is an unmistakable failure. It was doomed from the 
first. It was a make-shift measure and there was neither heart 
nor soul in it. It failed to satisfy Indian aspirations, at the same 
time that it failed to benefit the service f by the accession of the 
right sort of men. It was the outcome of a time, which gave us 
the Press Act and the Arms Act, and virtually closed the door of 
competition in England against our youths. Nevertheless, I 
wish emphatically to state that it was an honest and well- 
meant measure, adopted by a Statesman who saw the pitfalls 
that lay in the way of unreserved competition. Hard words 
have been used by a certain section of the Irsdian Press with 
reference to Lord Lytton's conduct in the affair, and motives 
have been ascribed to him? which when ascribed to the com- 
monest personage in private life amount to libel and defama- 
tion. I hold that the abuse is undeserved and the suspicions 
unworthy, alike of the nobleman against whom they are levelled 
and of the good sense and loyalty of the people of India from a 
section of which they proceed. He acted no doubt upon motives 
of State policy, as I will endeavour to explain, and under an 
indubitable Russian scare. The British Government in India, 
it must be remembered, is the Government of a vast Empire, 
composed of multitudinous nationalities, by a handful of an alien 
people at a distance of some five thousand miles from their parent 
country. There is little in common between them and the peo- 
ple they are called upon to govern except humanity, and the 
possession of those attributes which the word humanity connotes. 
Their religion, their language, their manners and customs, their 
character, their civilization are different from ours. It must 
truly be a marvel to an outsider to observe, nevertheless, how 
well they pull on together the rulers and the ruled. 

What then is the secret of the solidarity, the harmony that 
prevails in this wonderful Empire ? I may be mistaken, but I 
think the secret lies in the unmistakable supremacy our rulers 
maintain. It is the prestige of their power, tfheir unquestioned 
position as a governing class, that enables a handful of English- 
men to maintain equilibrium between all the conflicting interests 
and passions to be found in this vast congeries *>f States and 
nationalities. Some of our great statesmen and administrators 


(all honour to them for the noble motives that inspired them) 
made the mistake of tampering with the supremacy of their race 
and lost us the Empire. The British people in India are not 
likely to repeat the error. 

It is possible that some of those who are ready to detect 
** trickery and fraud " in the conduct of our English rulers to- 
wards our country, will bid the latter return bag and baggage to 
their island home and trouble us no more. Fortunately for them 
and for others, but for them more than for others, the English are 
not likely to take tjiem at their word. Neither abuse nor sticks 
will drive them from India, such sticks at any rate as any of them 
can wield. England will hold this Empire as long as she can, 
because it redounds to her glory and profit to hold it ; and it 
fortunately happens in this case, as it seldom happens in cases of 
foreign rule, that it redounds to the glory and profit of this 
Empire to be held by England. Thus, as the diplomatists say, the 
interests of the two countries are identical, and the Indians and 
the English are bound to make the best of each other. Some of 
us in India, who revel in the democratic literature of England and 
America, are apt to run away therefrom with large and bril- 
liant ideas torn from their settings. We forget that abstract 
principles do nofc apply to human affairs, and that the most gene- 
rous axioms have to be accepted with their limitations. We 
forget that institutions that work ^vell in a homogenous com- 
monwealth break down utterly, when applied to communities 
from which the conditions of their success are absent. We forget 
that Representative Government and Democratic Institutions 
are on their trial even in Europe, where the conditions are most 
favourable to their development, and it remains to be seen in 
what manner the different forces will adjust themselves after 
the final struggle. We forget that in India free institutions have 
to be introduced with great caution and circumspection and 
that the English people, who are the virtual fathers and creators 
of free institutions in the modern world, are the best judges of the 
time and manner of their introduction in this ancient home .of 
despotism. We ought to remember that their own democratic 
instincts, inborn as they arc in the race and nation, will never let 
them rest until they have grafted their favourite institutions on 
Indian soil. They will need little encouragement from us in this 
matter, we may rest assured, and less guidance ; it is for us to 
prepare ourselves for receiving and assimilating them as they 
come, if we find they are for our good. 

A careful consideration of these principles will show us that 
we need not seek in " trickery and fraud " for an explanation of 
Lord Lytton's policjr. As a Viceroy responsible to his Queen and 
country for the safety and well-being of his vast satrapy, he was 
no doubt staggered at the prospect 06 the unchecked admission 
of Indians into the higher service, upon which rest in a large 
measure the foundations of British supremacy in India. He was 


no doubt conscious of the insufficiency of competition to provide 
a safeguard, and had a vivid sense t of the facility with which a 
certain order of young minds in India is able to distance all 
ordinary pursuit in that race. He was confronted with the 
dilemma of either surrendering the service, and a fortiori the 
Empire, into the eager hands of one or two forward Indian races 
not gifted with the power to keep it either for themselves or 
for England, or setting aside and trampling under foot a Royal 
Proclamation of most grave and solemn import. Lord Lytton 
chose a middle course. He would not surrender the service ; he 
could not rescind a Royal promise ; he threw to the hungry and 
clamorous a few crumps of bread and bade them be satisfied 
until he could give them more. Lord Lytton was not opposed to 
Indian advancement ; he was fearful of English retrogression. 
He was acuated by no race antagonism ; he was certainly friendly 
to us, and tried to do his best for us under the circumstances ; 
and who can find fault with a man for doing the best he can ? 

But to return from this digression, I maintain that it would 
be unwise and inexpedient on political grounds : 

(1) to open the competition to all comers, 

(2) or to admit Indian Civilians to anjr position in the 

service whatsoever in regular course of promotion, 
(8) I also hold that a mere literary test is insufficient 
to secure us th best men. 

We are not yet prepared to abide by the results of unreserved 
competition. India is essentially a conservative country where 
privileged classes have for centuries held dominant sway, where 
the institution of caste has as yet lost little of its vitality, and 
where respect and reverence are important elements in the people's 
submission to political authority. A low caste Indian raised to 
power can never command the willing allegiance of those over 
whom he is set to rule, because he can never command their 
respect or reverence ; and if his position is backed by the power 
and prestige of our Government, he will be hated if obeyed, but 
loved or respected never. The conditions which this state of 
society indicates are, it must be remembered, favourable to the 
existence of a strong Government, and no wise ruler will violently 
disturb them if he can help it. Circumstances may change ; 
time may, and perhaps will sweep away these land-marks 
the growth of centuries of placid life but until the change has 
taken place, and the old foot-holds of Indian life are swept away, 
statesmen will have to adjust their combinations out of the 
existing elements which none may disturb except at his peril. I 
may be old fashioned in my ideas, but I confess I should be grieved 
to see any rapid change attempted. Let the Md life and the old 
ideas that sprang out of it die of senility and natural decay. This 
is inevitable. But I should grieve to see one little finger raised 
to bring about their premature downfall. What <5ur social and 
domestic life and our political institutions are likely to become 


under the forcing tendency of an exotic civilization, aped but 
not assimilated, is well typified by the atrocities that are being 
daily committed in our national arts under the supposed influ- 
ence of European taste. Any one whose artistic sense has ever 
been shocked by the un-Indian combination of colours and out- 
rageous patterns, now produced at some of our art manufactories 
from an impulse of blind imitation will be able to imagine the 
shock sustained by the time-honoured conservative instincts 
of Indians in the face of the subversive ideas of some of their 
countrymen. I kn<?w that my thoughts will be echoed in mil- 
lions of Indian homes and hearts, and that even in Bengal itself, 
which is our great manufactory of platitudes, I shall find sym- 
pathy and support among those who have time-honoured heir- 
looms to protect or old family honour to uphold. 

But an unreserved competition is sure to lead to another 
difficulty. Under its operation the whole service would be swamp- 
ed by men from one or two favoured Provinces. Very few of 
the robuster races of India, on whom the Empire relies to a great 
extent for its defences, would have a chance. The Nizam and 
Scindhia and Holkar and the proud old Chieftains of Rajputana 
and the Punjab would have to bow their coroneted heads down 
before any lettered upstart who might happen to rise to power. 

There is a word or two to be said^ with regard to the efficiency 
of the method by which civilians are selected. We select them 
purely by an intellectual test, forgetting that there is something 
like heredity in the attributes that go to the making of a ruler. 
It is not intellect alone that tells ; it is intellect and the indefin- 
able something that marks out the gentleman in a crowd, and 
manifests itself in practical life by tact, by courtesy to inferiors, 
by coolness and self-possession in the face of difficulties, by honour- 
able conduct in the absence of motives of fear or favour, by pluck 
in danger, by the disregard of personal considerations in the 
discharge of public or private duty and by a hundred other phases 
of character all bearing on the conduct of life. Far be it from 
me to arrogate this as the birthright of any one caste or order. 
Human nature, cast after the image of our Maker, is the birth- 
right of all. But it is in the fashioning of it afterwards that we 
stamp it with our particular trade-mark, which it takes genera- 
tions of a different handling to alter or efface. 

And competition, such as we are familiar with, is after all 
simply a literary test and appraises those that submit to it only 
in terms of the intellect. Man, be it remembered, is a three- 
cornered being, and intellect is the least influential of the three 
corners in his relation to his fellow-men. Is a man strong of 
arm ? Then let us seek his protection or beware how we provoke 
his resentment. Is he truthful in his .dealings and just ? Then 
let us rely on^him to deal justly with us and render, us what is 
ours. Is he learned? What then? He may teach us the 
secrets of nature and thus yield us pleasure, or confer on us power 


that may be converted into bread. But manhood is not nourish- 
ed by bread alone. Classical knowledge, or scientific, does 
not afford us guidance in our condufct towards each other, or 
towards the State, as citizens or subjects. And yet what does 
competition test but the power of assimilating knowledge, nay 
perhaps of only storing it up for reproduction on the application 
of the proper stimulus. Capacity for physical endurance, power 
of muscle and sinew, moral capability, force of character, these 
are not meted by a literary test. 

It would t*e all the better for British rule f in India if com- 
petition was made less unreserved even for Englishmen, and a 
little more credit was given for morale and physique in casting 
its final balance sheet. But an English civilian, in the very cir- 
cumstances of his race, bears a Hall Mark for the people of India 
which will cover a multitude of defects. Not so the Indian 
civilian. No mere mark will suffice him. He must be real sound 
metal to be able to hold his own. For him the competition such 
as we have it now is not enough. It is not competent by itself to 
single him out for us. It will sometimes make grievous mis- 
takes and give us the wrong man. If the experiment of admit- 
ting Indians to the higher service is to be tried, it ought not to 
be vitiated at the very outset by such an obvious error. 

Until such time therefore as the test can* be rendered 
more exhaustive and less onesided, I venture to suggest the 
adoption of the following plan. Let it first be decided what propor- 
tion of appointments every year is to be given to Indian youths 
say a fourth or a fifth of the total number. Let us suppose the 
total number of vacancies any year to be twenty and let us sup- 
pose that five out of the twenty are to be given to the Indian 
subjects of Her Gracious Majesty. I would in this case select 
the five most populous Provinces, though for that matter we 
might take in as many Provinces as we like, and allot one 
appointment to the first five in competition. I would 
then request the heads of the five or more Provinces to register 
the names of applicants, and make a careful selection out of them, 
say of three or four or five out of each batch, and give them the 
option of proceeding to England to compete for the appoint- 
ments. The local selection of candidates in the case of each 
Province should be guided with strict reference to the principles 
I have hereinbefore ventured to point out. The results of the 
competition in England must govern our future proceedings 
with regard to these youths. If exactly five out of the fifteen, 
or twenty or twenty five as the case may be, obtain places among 
the first twenty, well and good. If more than five get in, the 
first five should get appointments and the rest wait till the next 
year when they should be let in without a ffresh examination. 
If less than five, say only three, score the number of marks neces- 
sary to place them with the fortunate twenty, then the other 
two places should be given to the 19th and 20th on fhe list what- 
ever their nationality. 


It would not be necessary of course under this scheme for 
each Province to select an equal number of candidates. Bengal 
for example would perhaps send a larger number to the competi- 
tion than the Punjab. That is a matter of no great importance. 

As regards the present limit of age, I think it is a shade too 
narrow in the interests of the service itself, though I do not know 
why it should be felt a hardship by us when it is the same for all 
competitors. The fact is that other things being equal, Indian 
youths of 19 are much maturer in intellect and physique than 
English youths of f the same age. I would raise tfye limit of age, 
however, to twenty, and make a couple of years' residence either 
at Oxford or Cambridge compulsory as now. But I would draw 
the line there, for if a young man does not begin practical life 
at 22, he is apt to get too old and case-hardened to have the mal- 
leability necessary for the ready assimilation of fresh experiences 
and practical lessons of life. Good officials are not born but 
made, it is the first few years of novitiate that mould for them 
their future careers. With reference to this subject and some 
other conditions of a fair competition, I beg permission to quote 
from an old friend. Talking of the reduction of the limit of age 
from 22 to 21 and then to 19 the Hindu Patriot of the 29th of 
November last year makes the following remarks : 

" We won't say that this was done purposely to exclude 
Indians. Perhaps it was done because it was felt that it was 
not so good to buy the very best thing stamped with the Hall 
Mark at the very best open market, as to buy immature un- 
finished things and take the risk of finishing them somehow." 

This is no doubt sarcastic, though the point of the sarcasm is 
a little blunted by the consideration that the risk of finishing the 
articles has to be accepted in any ease, for there is no such thing 
as a finished official to be bought or sold in any market, and that 
the finishing is better begun young than when maturity has case- 
hardened the subject of the experiment. Upon the reduction 
of the marks formerly allotted to Oriental classics the Patriot's 
sarcasm is more to the point. 

" The reduction may have been made," says the writer, 
44 for a notion th^t for the discharge of Judicial and Executive 
duties in India for Indians, a knowledge of Latin and Greek was 
of greater importance than that of Sanskrit and Arabic." The 
reduction perhaps was made with a view to narrowing as much 
as possible the chances of Indians getting in, without imposing 
on them invidious legal disabilities by means of a Statute of Par- 
liament. But this, be it remembered, was at a time and under 
a regime when the few admissions of Indians to the higher service 
were looked up^n as unwise and inexpedient. Times have 
changed since then. India has made vast strides during the- last 
decade towards a closer union of Interests with the Imperial 
Power, and her loyalty towards the latter* has been demonstrated 
in a manner that has taken the outside world by surprise. There 


is less risk now than there was fifteen years ago in the admission 
of Indians to the higher ranks of the administration. And once 
the principle is conceded the readjustment of the conditions of 
competition so as to offer a perfectly fair field on equal terms to 
all competitors will be a simple matter of detail. 

I am opposed to the competition being transferred to India, 
or even a simultaneous competition in India and in England. 
For a long time to come the number of appointments allotted 
to Indians will be too small to make it worth while holding 
an examination in this country. The advantages, moreover, 
of a lengthened residence in England for Indians destined 
for the higher service are overwhelming. Then again no two 
examinations held at centres so far apart could be uniform, and 
this would lead to unfairness in the results and consequent heart- 
burnings. We are not asked to help towards the creation of 
another Statutory Service, one holding a "position midway bet- 
ween the higher and the subordinate services. Yet this is vir- 
tually what a competition in India would effect. We are called 
upon to point out the best way according to our lights of admit- 
ting Indians to the higher service. 

A lengthened sojourn in England is of incalculable benefit to 
Indian youths, whether they aspire to places in tKc Covenanted 
Service, or merely seek to finish their education. English life, 
character, and manners cannof be studied except in England and 
amongst Englishmen. It is a common remark that Englishmen 
who have never been abroad are more insular and less cosmopo- 
litan in their views of things in general than their travelled fellow* 
countrymen. The youths of India, however, need to a much 
greater degree than Europeans, the polish that contact with the 
outside world alone can give. Indians are very domestic in their 
habits. An ordinary Indian, in comparison with other Asiatics, 
is more shy and self-conscious. Take a Persian and an Arab for 
example. He is, in nine cases out of ten, more self-possessed 
and self-reliant, and betrays a greater knowledge of the world 
than nine out of ten Indians of the same or even a superior class. 
It is in the enervating influence of domesticity, and the seclusion 
of women in India, that we must seek for the causes of this differ- 
ence, which contact with the European world in early youth, 
when character is yet forming, will assuredly rub off. It is im- 
portant that our youths should enter the struggle of life well 
accoutred, and clear of impediments. 

If this is true of all Indian youths, how much truer still it 
must be of those, who are to take part in the higher adminis- 
tration of their country, side by side with Englishmen ? With- 
out going so far as to say that " honesty, diligence, sense of 
duty, firmness of temper, perseverance, sense of honour, and 
independence of thought,*' are characteristics of Englishmen, 
and are not'to be fourfd in any other race, it must be con- 
ceded that the Indian, who is to be associated with Englishmen 

on equal terms in the administration of his own country, must 
needs acquire English habits of thought, and the power of view- 
ing things from the point of view of an English administrator. 
He must get rid of the Idola which his domestic life and his en- 
vironment impose on him, and this is impossible except by a long 
residence in a European country, by preference in England, and 
by association with Englishmen of the right kind. 

It must not be assumed, however, that residence in England 
will turn out good men whatever the material we send up, and 
in whatever way t it is handled. Instances are not wanting of 
young men who have gone to England for their education and 
have returned no better than they went, if artything, perhaps a 
little worse. For, those unaccustomed to the restraint and 
discipline of good manners and high breeding under their own roofs 
in their own country, do not take kindly to the greater refine- 
ment and higher breeding of English society. Such are the youths 
sometimes to be seen at the low pleasure resorts of the English 
capital, but seldom or never in the domestic circle of well-bred 
English houses and homes. English friends on board a vessel 
that carried some Indian passengers of this class, some years ago 
assured me that the latter invariably kept together during the 
voyage, whether on deck or at the mess table, and carried on 
conversation Smongst themselves in their vernacular, which of 
course no one else understood. .They seldom mixed or con- 
versed with their English fellow passengers, some of whom were 
n\en of their own year and their own profession. Yet, he observed 
that they were treated with marked, though distant courtesy 
and indulgence by the latter in spite of their unsociable ways. 
In agreeable contrast to them was a young man of different 
Indian nationality but better breeding, with whom his English 
fellow-passengers were on the best of terms, and who was treated 
as a friend and brother. I have heard of a youth who on his 
return from England denied his parents and refused to see them. 
Such specimens, it must be confessed, are not encouraging. I 
may observe en passant that when an Indian complains of ill- 
treatment at the hands of an Englishman, it is either that fhere 
is a lapse of good manners on the part of the former as the first 
provocation, or the case is one of a timid ignorant Indian falling 
into the hands of a rough Englishman of the clodhopper kind. I 
am not justifying ill-treatment ; I am only trying to explain it. 
Instances of down-right ill-treatment of Indians on the part of 
English gentlemen, are very rare. As to provocation, I think we 
ourselves are apt to resent impertinence as much as Englishmen. 

What led me to this digression is the lesson that we are daily 
taught of the folly of hoodwinking broad social and ethnic fa^ts. 
A pariah by birtK or by nature can be ennobled by Royal Letters 
Patent, but no Letters Patent can make a gentleman of him. 
The visit to England will no doubt do a great deal, but the result 
will depend Vm the nature of the material, and on the way it is 


I have pointed out once before another limitation to which 
the opening of the service to Indians needs to be sub- 
jected in the interests of British 'supremacy, as much as in 
those of order and good Government. Let me explain myself 
more fully here ere I close this part of my memorandum. I 
think the time is not yet ripe for the appointment of Indians to 
the charge of districts or divisions, especially in Provinces in which 
war-like races predominate or the population of which consists 
of mixed nationalities whose interests are not always identical. 
It is questionable whether even in the agrarian districts of Lower 
Bengal where the inflammable elements are of a very mild char- 
acter, a native -civilian can always be trusted to hold the leading 
post of the administration. No doubt some will be found quite 
up to the mark especially among the drafts from the robuster 
races of the north, but measures affecting such wide interests 
cannot be shaped upon exceptions. This limitation, however, 
does not tie us down too much, and we need not be discouraged. 
The avenues of the Judicial and Revenue Departments, the higher 
grades of the Police, Finance, Registration and other Civil 
Departments remain open for us. In this connection I wish to say 
a few words with reference to another ifriportant service, I mean 
the Political. I do not see that there is any political obstacle 
in the way of able Indian civilians being employed as first or 
second Assistants to Residents in Native States, or even as Agents 
in the minor Principalities*. Consulships in the Persian Gulf 
ought also to be opened to them. My own impression is that 
Indians of the proper calibre will rather distinguish themselves 
in this particular line. It may be found useful at times to have 
Indian attaches to some of our foreign Embassies. At any rate 
the idea is worth consideration. I am under the impression 
that two or three tentative appointments were at one time made 
by the Imperial Government in the Political Department, but 
I have not followed their careers and am not aware how they 
prospered. I do not, however, believe much in empiricism. I 
should like to see the experiment tried with due exactness and 
in the presence of the necessary conditions. I mean that I should 
like to see the experiment tried with the proper quality of men, 
with a sufficient previous training. I have great respect for the 
scions of noble and princely families, but for such work they must 
qualify. The qualification being present I would rather have 
the scions of noble and princely families by preference, but not 
till then. I ventuie to say that Mahomedans will be found better 
suited for this kind of work than men of other Indian nationali- 

The pay question with the Covenanted Service is a rather sore 
point with me. I cannot make up my mind to recommend any 
difference being made between Indian and European civilians 
in this respect,not on account of the money value of the difference, 
for that 1 consider paltry in view of the issues at stake, but be- 
cause the distinction introduces ap element of disparity between 


two members of the same service and of the same rank, which 
will operate to the prejudice of the status and official importance 
of the Indian members in the popular mind. Yet, I must confess 
I do not see how we can justly claim perfect equality of pay, 
when we know that Englishmen in India are handicapped in the 
matter of expenditure to the extent of their " home charges " 
at the prevailing rate of exchange, and by the expensive appli- 
ances they have to resort to in order to make the Indian climate 
endurable to themselves and their families. In a memorandum 
I drew up in October 1881, at the request of my esteemed friend 
Mr. Syed Mahmood* I expressed myself very strongly in favour 
of equality of pay (the paper here referred to is printed as an 
appendix to the present memo). I have since then, however, 
seen reason to modify some of my views. But I still maintain 
that the modern mode of life which every Indian civilian will 
have to adopt is a very expensive one, and equality of pay, if 
conceded, would give him but a very slight advantage over his 
English colleague. 

But the demand for equal emoluments should not be pressed 
for another reason. It is our interest to introduce the element 
of economy into the question of the employment of Indians. 
We shall be thereby furnishing Government with a very power- 
ful motive for conceding our claims. Let it once be demon- 
strated that Government can get thy greater part of their work 
done as efficiently as now by cheaper agency, and we shall 
find that Government will not be slow to avail themselves of it. 
This is no new idea, but it is well worth the consideration of my 

It is sometimes alleged that the necessity of a visit to England 
will operate unfavourably in the case of certain classes of Hindoos 
who may not cross the " black waters " without loss of caste. 
I think this cannot be helped. People must submit to disabi- 
lities imposed upon them by their own society. It is hard on 
them, no doubt, and hard perhaps on the service that is thus 
possibly deprived of some bright ornaments, but I say it canixot 
be helped. All honour however, to those brave men, who would 
rather forego great worldly advantages, than alienate themselves 
from their countrymen by a disregard of what their consciences 
have for centuries been taught to regard as binding. It would 
be a great point gained if some method could be devised of en- 
abling high caste Hindoos to sojourn in England without loss of 
caste. The Oriental Institute at Woking professes to supply the 
desideratum, but it remains to be seen how it will be looked upon 
by orthodox public opinion in India, when it is in full working 

While on this part of the subject, I beg to be allowed to say a 
few words with reference to the expediency or otherwise of grant- 
ing scholarships and passage money t# Indians proceeding 
to* the competition in England. I am opposed to all eleemo- 


synary favors to individuals in this connection ; they derogate 
from the dignity of the service. A few exceptions may how- 
ever be founded for open competition among the candidates 
elect of the Provinces. Perhaps some of our patriots will put 
their hands in their pockets and contribute towards a fund for 
this purpose. The great Indian Princes, if approached in a pro- 
per manner, may also be induced to render valuable help and con- 
tribute materially towards the political elevation, perhaps, of 
some of their own subjects. If bitten by the scheme, the more 
advanced rulers among them may even see it fit to make use of 
the examining machinery in England in order to get recruits 
for their own services. The late Sir Salar Jung was in favor of 
some such method for the Hyderabad Government. He was 
prepared to content himself with men figuring low down in the 
columns of the competition list provided they were of good fa- 
mily and unexceptionable moral reput.e. I may mention, in 
passing, that that great statesman and diplomatist attached consi- 
derable importance even to such a thing as personal appearance 
in making selections. It was one of his pet theories that for high 
and commanding positions men of a fine presence should be pre- 
ferred. Some will laugh at the idea as an instance of dilettantism 
in statecraft, but it is nevertheless founded, I firmly believe, on 
a profound study of human nature. * 

I will conclude this memorandum with a few general remarks- 
The demand that Indians sliould receive their fair share of State 
patronage is not an unreasonable one, and every willingness has 
been shown on the part of the Government to concede it. But 
are all the demands that are being made in our name equally 
reasonable ? Aje they even our demands ? When some of our 
platform orators talk of our national aspirations, who are they 
prepared to answer for ? Will the Punjabees be satisfied if they 
have a jury to perpetrate miscarriages of justice ? Will the 
Mohammedans rejoice in an Indian Parliament ? Do the great 
Princes and Chieftains of India insist on sending a Mr. Lai Mohan 
Ghosh to the English Parliament, in order that he may abuse 
the House of Lords and the privileged classes in choice English, 
and undertake to cart them to the British Museum to be laid on 
its shelves as relics of an effete past ? Are the Gurkhas and the 
Sikhs, and the Purbyas content to see the defences of the Empire 
mutilated, and will the Afghan Amir remain as willing an ally 
of ours as he is now, once our strength is reduced ? If we are 
given all the representative institutions which England has carv- 
ed out for herself after centuries of a stirring history, and with 
them all the freedom that an Englishman enjoys in his own fa- 
therland, is it considered what India is to do with these insti- 
tutions and this freedom ? Why, some of tl|e simplest humani- 
tarian principles which would be welcomed by one section of the 
people, cannot yet be applied by the Legislature, because they 
would go&d anothe* section of the people eveh in the same 
Province to the verge of rebellion. Mr. Malabari's noble 


efforts on behalf of the Hindoo widow have yet to be crowned with 
success. One Province will not have strict discipline intro- 
duced into its schools, anotfier will have nothing to say to com- 
pulsory vaccination. Mohammedans look with abhorrence on any 
legislative interference with their right to seek domestic hap- 
piness in a plurality of wives, the Hindoos of Coorg resent any 
legal check on the privileges of polyandry. How then are these 
varied interests to be focussed ? If we are to be governed 
by the representatives of a few favored nationalities, will not the 
more numerous but less favoured nationalities have a right to 
demand that their safety shall be guaranteed and their suscep- 
tibilities spared ? There are, it is true, the stock answers to those 
objections based upon theoretic platitudes, but no practical 
outlet from the bewildering labyrinth which they present. We 
have to trust to the lapse of time, and the slow process of evo- 
lution, helped and guided by the controlling pcwer, that 
happily now rules our destinies, for the true solution. In the 
meantime, agitation and the outpourings of a free Press have 
perhaps their uses in the economy of progress They are at 
any rate endured by a righteous Government conscious of its 

Letter to Mr. Syed Mahmud on the 
subject of Convenanted Civil Service 


IN compliance with your request I have put down on paper my 
views on the subject I had the pleasure of discussing with 
you the other day. If you find my arguments weak, I am 
sure the weakness is not in the cause, but in my advocacy. I 
am afraid you will think my letter very long, but I assure you I 
have done my best to keep it within reasonable limits. 

From what I understood you to say, I suppose I may assume 
that the Government wish to give a certain number of appoint- 
ments in the Covenanted Civil Service to competent native gentle- 
men selected for that purpose. The question theh arises : will 
it be expedient to pay them at a lower rate than the Covenanted 
Civilians who enter the service by the gate of competition are 

I answer this question distinctly in the negative. I may be 
wrong, but I hold that if appointments of trust and responsibility 
such as have hitherto been reserved for European Civilians, 
selected under the competitive system in England, are given to 
Indians on lower salaries than are paid to the former, the 
administration will suffer grievously in efficiency. 

Indeed, I do not see how the scheme can work at all. An 
Indian Civilian who has secured his position by competition in 
England and is in every respect officially on the same footing 
as his European fellow servants, starts with a fair field, and pro- 
vided character and ability are not wanting, he may prove suc- 
cessful. But an Indian Civilian who has been, as it were, adopted 
into the service by favour, on condition of his submitting to a 
permanent, and to the popular mind, most tangible official in- 
feriority to " competition wallahs " of the same rank, will find 
himself badly handicapped. In the eyes of his own fellow 
countrymen he will never be the same as a pucka civilian of 
his rank, I doubt if he will be so in the eyes of his colleagues and 
fellow servants ; I am quite certain he will not in his own. The 
money value of an article, be it brute matter &r the human in- 
tellect, will ever be the mpst universally accepted criterion of 
its intrinsic worth. Either, on the one hand, differences of salary 
will fail to secure men competent to hold positions of trust and 
responsibility, or if really competent, men are induced to accept 


a different salary from what is paid for the same work to others, 
their worth as compared to the worth of those others will come 
to be questioned to the wliole extent of the difference. 

The result will be that the Indian Civilians will never merge 
into the Covenanted Service. They will form the nucleus of a 
new service, somewhat anomalous in organization, but ranking 
after the Covenanted Service to which they were supposed to have 
been elected. Indians of all ranks, except perhaps the " educat- 
ed classes," will feel aggrieved that these men whom the ruling 
service was unwilling or unable to assimilate, should be set to 
rule over them with powers similar to those exercised by mem- 
bers of that Service. The " educated classes ' 4 will resent the 
difference of treatment as an insult to the ability and intelligence 
of their countrymen, and harp on it as a fruitful theme for news- 
paper leaders and political orations, while really thoughtful men 
will question the wisdom of creating such an anomalous service, 
and will perhaps endeavour to keep their sons out of it. 

Why do I call the Service anomalous ? I do so advisedly. 
If the measure is carried out, instances will often occur which can 
be described by no other word. Thus, for example, it will often 
happen that a senior member of the Service will be in receipt of 
less pay than one much junior to him in length of service. When 
similarly, an Indian Civilian is promoted in due course to a posi- 
tion in which he has to exercise, authority over European 
Civilians, holding lower positions, he will sometimes be receiving 
less pay than some of his subordinates. Government may lay 
down arbitrary rules regulating precedence and promotion in 
such cases, but public opinion and the private feelings of those 
concerned will not be guided by rules that run counter to the 
rules of common sense and arithmetic, by which seniority in the 
same service of right belongs to those who are in receipt of higher 

If economic grounds are urged in defence of a lower scale of 
payment to Indian Civilians, I would venture to submit, in the 
first place, that the motive is not one that will redound to the 
credit of Government. A great and powerful Government is 
committed io a certain amount of magnanimity in its dealings 
with its subjects, and when the subjects happen to be of an alien 
race, magnanimity of attitude obviously assumes the import- 
ance of a duty dictated by State Policy. But waiving this 
argument which may be charged with savouring of sentiment, 
I would venture to submit that even on economic grounds the 
measure in contemplation has very little to recommend it. 

The number of appointments given to Indians is not likely, 
at any future time near enough to be included in present calcu- 
lations, to be vetfy large. If I am not mistaken, it will be long 
before a tenth of the total number qf covenanted appointments 
in British India are held by Indians. But, say, we calculate on 
the basis of* a tenth, the total saving on 'the entire "Service will 
amount to one thirtieth of tjie outlay, if the relative emoluments 


of Indian and European Civilians are as 2 : 8 ; and only one 
fortieth, if they are as 3 : 4. But this is far from a fair estimate 
of the total savings, because the higher appointments which 
carry the largest salaries wilJ still be held by Europeans, and thus 
the actual saving will be considerably less than a fortieth of the 
total outlay. I do not think I shall be far out if I just double the 
figure and say that the actual savings will be in the proportion 
of 1/60 to 1/10 of the total outlay. Let us say in round numbers 
that the saving is 2 per cent, on the outlay, which considerably 
enhances the proportions assumed. It will then be seen that the 
actual saving is hardly worth the risk of developing a scheme 
which is likely tg stir up class distinctions without even the 
guarantee that the efficiency of the administration will not be 
sacrificed in the endeavour to carry out a penny-wise policy. 
A further extension of the present Uncovenanted Service would 
I venture to submit, be a less hazardous wqy of effecting a saving 
on salaries than the scheme now under consideration. 

I have endeavoured to show, erstwhile, that the employment 
of equally competent public servants on two different scales of 
pay will act unfavourably on the administration and impair its 
efficiency. I will now attempt to prove that the converse is 
equally true, and that difference of pay will keep competent men 
out of the Service. If I have understood the matter rightly, the 
proposal is based on the ide% very common among Europeans 
that an Indian has less to spend than a European, and Caeteris 
paribuSy an Indian Civilian will be equally well off as a European 
of similar rank and position on a fraction, say two-thirds, of the 
latter's salary. This is in my humble opinion a fallacy. I ad- 
mit that an Indian can live respectably, according to Indian 
notions of respectable living, on very small income. But so, for 
that matter, can a European. Respectability, as applied to 
domestic life, is a comparative term, and there are a great many 
things to be considered before we can arrive at any practical 
conclusion on the subject consonant with facts. A European, 
living a bachelor life, for example, can, within certain limits, live 
very economically indeed. While, if a married native gentleman 
of family, as often happens, is the only member of his family 
that earns any money, he has, I venture to state without fear of 
contradiction, more calls on his purse than a European gentleman 
in a similar position. If on the one hand a married European, 
living in a gay locality, spends a fortune at the milliner's and 
dress-makers, an Indian wastes as much if not more on ceremonials 
enjoined on him by social or religious custom ; not to mention 
pensioners and poor relatives whom both inclination and custom 
oblige him to help. In short, no one who has an intimate 
knowledge of Indian society will deny that wh^it may be called 
respectable family life among Indians, is very expensive indeed. 
It is notorious that all the'old Indian families that at one time 
formed the s'quirearchy of India, are dying out or getting reduced 
to the ranks, in consequence, partly of extravagant customs 


grafted on the social life of the rank to which they belong. 

But we are not concerned at present with Indians of this class. 
Those who are likely to be nominated to posts in the Covenanted 
Service will, it is presumed, be men of another stamp altogether. 
They will be men living in aspirations for the future, not in 
regrets about the past. Their minds will have been nurtured on 
Bacon and Faraday not on Artistotle and Avicenna. Their 
sympathies will be with England and with Europe, and their 
creed will be one of progress, not stagnation. They will be men 
of culture and taste, and in their inward and outward lives will 
live up to their convictions. It will be as impossible for them 
to go back to the unadulterated native life of the day, as it would 
be for an Englishman of today to live like an Englishman of the 
reign of Elizabeth or Queen Anne. Once a member of the Civil 
Service, it will no longer be a matter of choice but of bounden 
duty for an Indian Civilian to live like the other civilians. He 
must be prepared to mix freely with them, and to a certain 
extent, make their social life his own. He must not, under any 
circumstances, degrade his position by a mean and niggardly 
style of living. He must entertain and be entertained. It goes 
without saying that he must educate his sons (if not also his 
daughters) in .England. He must be prepared to lead Indian 
society, and be the mainspring of all reforms among them. In 
his private and public life, in his tastes and his habits, he must 
furnish them with a living standard* and a pattern. 

I am aware that these ideas will be scouted as Utopian, if not 
revolutionary. My model Indian Civilian will be declared an 
impossible being, and undesirable if possible. I am neither 
afraid nor ashamed to confess, nevertheless, that I thoroughly 
believe in him. My model is copied from life. I could name, 
only names are inviduous, instances of men who fully bear out my 
conception of the ideal Indian Civilian. Their name, to be sure, 
is not legion, but they exist. Hitherto they have been kept 
out of the Service, because it has not been made worth their while 
to enter it. Not long ago Indians of birth and education used to 
be told that they could only enter the Uncovenanted Service 
through the ranks. Even a Tahsildarship was too good for them, 
and they were asked to begin as Peshakars. Men who had risen 
from still lower grades were preferred. Considering the standard 
aimed at, the practice was justifiable. Extra Assistant Com- 
missioners, who have been moharirs on ten or fifteen rupees per 
month, are likely to be more expert in the mechanical part of 
official work than fresh hands. Their usefulness in this respect 
condones the evils they have gone through, and that must always 
cling to them. What if their lives are not clean and their con- 
sciences not overtjrammelled with scruples, so they can help turn 
out returns and clear files in double guick time. I do not wish 
at all to deprecate this class of public servants, but I say they will 
not do as Civilians. They are ever subject to influences from 
which a public servant of tfye higher grades should be perfectly 


free. And yet these are exactly the class of men whom the new 
Service will attract. The market is not overstocked with Indians, 
of the same calibre as ' k competition wallahs " from Europe* 
However few the appointments thrown open to them, the demand 
will for a long time be always greater than the supply, and if 
their services are wanted they will have to be obtained at their 
market price. If this is denied to them, they will carry their 
talents to law and other learned professions that are open to 
them. Thus the new Service will have to be recruited from 
among men of lower qualifications, such as are to be found filling 
the majority of posts in the Uncovenanted Service. Should the 
standard thus attained be declared to be high enough, the ques- 
tion will immediately arise : why then is such an expensive Service, 
as the Convenanted Civil Service kept up ? What is its raison- 
d'etre and its justification. If it was inexpedient to give the high 
appointments to Indians, why not have opened the Service to so 
called " adventurers " from Europe with proper tests applied 
in India ? A cheap service could thus be constituted quite 
equal to, if not better than the Uncovenanted Service of the 

A word more about my model Indian Civilian before I come 
to the subject of nomination. I am aware that aij Indian of cul- 
tured tastes and methodical orderly habits, specially one who 
affects a European style of living, is distasteful to some English 
people. The reason, I believe, is not far to seek. Europeans 
come to the East expecting gorgeous costumes and semibarbarian 
aspects. Their sense of the picturesque is shocked, therefore, to 
encounter a civilized Indian who is ashamed to be decked out in 
gay colours and barbaric pearl and gold. I am not an advocate 
of European costumes, but I do not see the logic of condemning 
an Eastern because he discards flowing robes and bright colours, 
for short coats and sombre hues. If he is what is called a " prig " 
or a " snob," he will be one whatever costume he may affect ; nor 
is it true that an Indian ceases to be an Indian when he becomes 
Europeanized. My experience leads me to conclude that there 
are no men more thoroughly Indian, more profoundly interested 
in whatever concerns the destinies of their race and country, than 
those same Europeanized Indians, as they are called. They have 
to brave a certain amount of persecution and abuse, but their 
influence, nevertheless, with their countrymen is immense, though 
perhaps imperceptible. There are earnest reformers among 
them, brave men and true. In all that concerns the Empire, they 
are always ranged on the side of order and good government, 
and are loyal to the core. If they are sometimes to criticise the 
acts of Government, or resist the exercise of unlawful authority, 
surely they behave as better subjects than unprincipled fanatics 
who fan the flame of disaffection in secret, while professing abject 
submission to the might afid power of England. 

But granting thai competent men, willing to f accept lower 
salaries than their European fello t w servants, are forthcoming, 


how are they to be secured ? By nomination or by competition ? 
Competition is a fair test of certain kind of ability and applica- 
tion, but it is open to sever'al most important objections. In the 
first place it is questionable whether administrative ability, and 
the land of ability that carries a young man through a severe 
test on book work, are one and the same thing. In fact the 
moral courage, and the certain amount of self-control and endur- 
ance shown by Indians who cross over the waters and stay in 
England as students, are better, though not sufficient, tests of 
possible administrative ability, than success in any^ examination 
on book work, however severe. 

Secondly, in a competition, open to all comers, there is always 
the risk of enlisting adventurers and men of no particular stand- 
ing or stake in the country. I think it will not be denied that the 
employment of such men, to any appreciable extent in command- 
ing position, is much to be deprecated. Thirdly, admission by 
competition in this country without previous selection is still 
more to be deprecated, for in addition to the other evils inherent 
in the system or superadded by eliminating from it the incidental 
advantages of a sojourn in England, it will tend to cheapen the 
Service. In any case, civilians thus admitted will never be able 
to hold their o\vn with civilians admitted in England. 

Competition* having thus been tried and found wanting, we 
are driven to nomination. But by ^vhom are the nominations to 
be made ? By local officials ? But what is to be the test by 
which the selections are to be made ? The moment a personal 
element is introduced, it is evident that the test applied will vary 
from time to time, and place to place, according to the disposi- 
tion and idiosyncracies of the official making the selection. 
The system will be full of risks. Mistakes will constantly occur. 
Local officials sometimes know very little of Indian social life. 
They have no time, even when the inclination is present, to study 
it. A barber's, or a butcher's son who has risen in life by means 
known only to his countrymen, will sometimes be taken to be a 
representative man and fit to figure in the new Service. There is 
not generally much to be got out of a barber's or a butcher's 
son of India, and, however, complaisantly Indian society may 
think it expedient, apparently, to look upon his elevation, it will 
never be really popular. In other cases perhaps a really re- 
presentative man will be chosen, but it will be found on trial 
that ability is utterly wanting. Some years ago when the policy 
of nomination was first inaugurated, two or three uncovenant- 
ed officials, I will not for obvious reasons mention where, were 
elevated to covenanted posts, together with a youth who had 
never seen any service before but belonged to a highly respectable 
elass. In Indian Circles the integrity of the uncovenanted no- 
minees was more than doubted, and suspicions so unworthy 
that I should feel ashamed to formulale them, were openly ex- 
pressed of thfe sincerity of Government in nominating them. 
I only mention the circumstance as an instance of the miscarriages 


to which personal nominations are liable. I do not know much 
about the youth, nobody seemed t$ know much of him at the 
time. I believe he is likely to be upright but not likely to be 
an "ornament to the Service." He was described to me as a 
" rough jewel " by an esteemed European friend and a " rough 
jewel " I am afraid he will always continue to be. 

To sum up, I am of opinion that the proposed scheme will not 
work for the following reasons : 

1. The prospects held out will not secure the class of men 

Government have in view. * 

2. A different scale of payment will stir up class distinc- 

tions 'and will tend seriously to imperil the efficiency 
and morale of the Service. 

3. Questions connected with precedence and promotion 

will constantly arise of a nature most difficult to deal 
with, on account of the inecfuality of pay between 
Civilians holding similar positions. 

4. The measure cannot be defended on the ground of 

economy, as the saving will not, at any rate for a 
long time to come, amount to more than 2 per cent, 
on the entire outlay on the Covenanted Civil Service, 

5. If the difference of pay is based on tjie supposition 

that Indians can live cheaper than Europeans, I 
venture to submit .that the position is untenable, and 
applies only to men in low positions living in pure 
Indian fashion, and bringing their children up in the 
old Indian way. 

6. Really competent Indians are few in number and cannot 

be obtained cheap. They will rather go to one of 
the learned professions than to a Service in which 
they will always be badly handicapped. 

7. A lower scale of payment coupled with the system of 

appointment by nomination will bring in incompetent 
men, and depreciate the value and dignity of the 
Service in the eyes of the Indians. 

8. Lastly, the scheme as it stands is sure to meet with 

opposition from the European Civilians and others 
who have won their way into the Service, because it 
will damage their prestige and retard to some extent 
their prospects of promotion. 

In conclusion, if I presume to hazard any positive opinion 
on such an important subject as the elevation of Indians in the 
Civil Service, I should say that no system would work well in 
practice that lost sight of either of the principles of nomination 
or competition, and that the two combined, conditional on the 
candidates undergoing a short noviciate in England after admis- 
sion, would be the best wajj of securing really competent men. 


8th October, 1881. SYED HOSSAIN BILGRAMI. 

Speech at the Nizam College Prize 
Distribution, on Monday the 24th 
February, 1890. 


IN pursuance of wh'at has become an annual custom I beg 
with His Highness' gracious leave to offer a few remarks on 
the work of the year reported on by Mr. Hodson. 

It would be superfluous to go over the ground he has already 
traversed. His facts and his figures speak for themselves, and 
his observations I can endorse from my own knowledge of the 
work he has done. It only remains for me to address myself 
to the thankless task of noticing some of his grievances, the 
gravity of which he has, I find, been too considerate to press on 
his hearers. 

One of these is over- work. I regret to say that while one 
institution after another has been handed over to his care, I 
have not been able to give him proportionate help. You will 
hardly believe it, but it is nevertheless true that my friend 
Mr. Hodson is at this moment Head Master or Principal of four 
distinct institutions, one of which is a College, and has to do a full 
day's lecturing besides. To borrow an analogy from a subject 
on which, as a public lecturer, he has lately brought to bear 
considerable research, viz. matrimony, he is, I may say, in the posi- 
tion of a man, and a Musulman, with four wedded wives, all clam- 
ouring for an equal share of his time and attention. Now you can 
easily imagine that it would be anything but a joke for a man 
to be so very much married, and I can assure you it is not a joke 
to have to look after four large and growing schools, and have 
to do a teacher's drudgery besides. I speak with sympathy 
because I speak from experience, not, I beg to say, of the ma- 
trimonial, but of the scholastic climax. I am sorry, however, 
I can hold out no hope of relief to him until the services of a 
lecturer in Physical Science, already sanctioned by His Excel- 
lency the Minister, have been secured in England. 

To pass now to another of Mr. Hodson's grievances. He 
complains, and very justly, of the irregularity of attendance 
of some of ttis pupils, or say rather the regularity with which 
they cease to be regular on , reaching the higher forms. This is 


a natter that not only strikes at the root of the efficiency and 
discipline of the school, but, if the qulprits only knew it, ruins 
for them what might have been most honourable and useful 
careers. His Highness generously spends thousands a month 
in order to bring education to the doors of those whom a wise and 
statesman-like policy would elevate to high places in the ad- 
ministration of their own country. But if the noblemen and 
gentlemen of Hyderabad will not avail themselves of these 
facilities, if they will allow themselves to be deluded into the 
belief that an. easy-going, lotus-eating, half-ecjucated and wholly 
undisciplined youth will be followed by a life of distinction and 
usefulness, or even of moderate success, they are most grievously 
mistaken. Such youths are more fitted to squander than to 
acquire a fortune, more fitted to ruin than to found a family. 
The noblemen and gentlemen, the Mansabdars and Jagirdars of 
Hyderabad forget that the conditions of public life are changed. 
They forget that the present knows nothing of the past, that 
the immediate future will know nothing of the present. They 
forget that times are changing, that our administrators will have 
to be less and less tolerant of inefficiencies as they go on, and 
that, to use a picturesque phrase, the old Moglai way of 
doing work will soon become a thing of the past. , Depend upon 
it, the youth of Hyderabad will have to learn tcJ work well, or 
they will have to make way for men from other countries who 
have learnt to do so. This i*s perhaps a hard thing to say, but 
it is nevertheless true, and I do not think I could do the people 
of Hyderabad a greater service than by telling them the hard 

We are often told that learning should be pursued for its 
own sake. It is an old and hackneyed advice. Falling from the 
lips of men of wisdom and high learning it is an elevating senti- 
ment that we are bound to receive with reverent attention. But 
in the mouths of men engaged in the work in which we are 
engaged, and addressed to crowds the majority of whom have to 
earn their own bread, it sounds more like a platitude, nay very 
nearly like cant. I confess I have come to take a very bread- 
and-butter view of the learning we are called upon to impart. 
Our aim here is to make what we teach of practical use. We 
have no time to educate men for the philosopher's tub. We 
would rather see our pupils turn out good Revenue Collectors, 
good Magistrates, good Judges, good Police Officers. My advice 
to the young men I see before me is this : 

In your school course have an eye to your future career. 
Arm yourselves for the battle of life with a good share of useful 
knowledge carefully acquired and accurately retained, but 
above all arm yourselves with self-knowledjjfe, self-respect and 
self-control. These are infallible weapons that will never fail 
you in the moment of danger. They are true fripnds, that will 
never desert you in your need. 


Let me also tell you that the key to all success whether 
at school or in life is to be found in the one word discipline. 
Discipline in its common narrow acceptation is equivalent to train- 
ing training in the sense of exacting strict obedience to the rule 
set down and allowing no deviation therefrom. But I wish this 
evening to put the idea before you in a wider light. You know 
that the one fact that repeats itself most persistently in our view 
is the blunders men are constantly making in the conduct of life 
blunders that range from the gaucheries that call forth a smile, to 
the mistakes that ?nd in blinding tears, from the low comedy of 
errors to the high tragedy of suffering. Well, a man who has en- 
tered life unprepared, often rushes blindfold into false steps and 
errors that burn themselves into his inmost being, and leave it 
scarred for ever more. Now, discipline wisely administered 
should attempt to anticipate these burning errors of responsible 
life, and mitigate the severity of the penalty with which they are 
pursued, as the vaccinator anticipates the fell ravages of small- 
pox with mild punctures of his own. I use the word mitigate 
advisedly, for who does not know that do what you like, the les- 
sons of life have to be learnt through pain and suffering. 

I will therefore say to the youths before me, submit cheerfully 
to the discipline of your school, and remember that each lesson 
learnt here at the cost of a little self-denial and perseverance by 
no means unpleasant, is perhaps arming you against future errors 
that might entail overwhelming misfortune or life-long remorse. 

I will only add one word more. I will say that I do not believe 
laxity of discipline is possible in any school without the remiss- 
ness of the teachers. Now, I know that some managers here and 
elsewhere would rather tolerate any laxity of discipline, than 
make their schools unpopular. Although the error arises from 
the habit people have of judging of the efficiency of a school by 
its strength, a most misleading test, it is none the less a grievous 
error. Boys that will not stop if discipline is enforced, are better 
out of the school. One well-disciplined and well-taught youth 
who has been plucked half a dozen times in University exami- 
nations, is far more valuable to society than a dozen rough, and 
undisciplined prodigies, that have taken their degrees at the first 
trial. The former, will be sure to do his life's devoir manfully; 
the latter may write essays or quote Shakespeare, but will never 
be able to rule either others or themselves. 

A brief note on the Education of 
Indian Princes 

IT may b*e accepted as axiomatic that ftidian children, es- 
pecially Indian Princes who will one day rule over millions 
of their own countrymen, should be brought up from their 
infancy as Indians and not as Europeans or rather pseudo- 

The essential principles of their religiqn, whatever it may be, 
free from all fanaticism and intolerance, should be instilled into 
their minds from a very early age, and they should be made fa- 
miliar with their national traditions, folk-tales and legends which 
play an important part in the formation of character. 

A thorough knowledge of their own mother tongue should be 
imparted to them as early as possible with a gogd grounding in 
their national classic, the language of their sacrecl books. They 
should be taught cleanlinesj of body and mind, love of truth, 
love of fair-dealing and strict punctuality in their daily program- 
me of work or play. Respect and reverence for their parents 
and elders should be carefully instilled into their minds. 

They should be taught riding and shooting, and they should be 
brought up to love manly games of all kinds, Indian and Eu- 
ropean, and a systematic scheme should be adopted for the 
development of their physique. The entourage in which they are 
brought up, the rooms, the servants, should be scrupulously 
clean, and the garden round the house well laid out and pretty. 
Their education in English should begin at the age of about 
twelve. When able to read and understand English well, their 
attention should be directed in a special manner to the critical 
study of history and political economy. If the youth has a pen- 
chant for figures, mathematics (higher mathematics) will be a 
help in developing the mind. When the boy has reached or is 
about to reach the age of puberty, special care should be taken to 
keep him away from the company of those who drink, and from 
association with women of doubtful character, such as slave 
girls, dancing girls and others of that ilk. He should be married 
at the age of about 18 or 20, and married to a carefully selected 
girl of his own rank, pretty and of good physique, and, if possible, 
well educated. I 

The evils to be carefully and scrupulously avoided are drink 
and women, to which may be added gambling in apy form. Any 
one of these evils is enough to ruin a young man for life, especially 


if be is born in purple. 

But how to attain these ends ? They look so formidable 
that at first sight one would take them to be counsels of per- 
fection. A little reflection, however, will show that they are not 
beyond the reach of princes and chiefs who are themselves cul- 
tured men of mature age and experience. All will depend on 
their selection of a proper person or persons for carrying out the 

To begin with, I would place the young prince at an early age 
in the hands of an % English governess. The governess should be 
a well-bred lady belonging to the better classes and of spotless 
reputation, known to be able to look after children. It should be 
the lady's duty to take care of the child, teach him to be cleanly 
in mind and body, to see that he has his proper food at the proper 
time, nurse him carefully when in bad health, insist on his at- 
tending to his religious duties, and scrupulously abstain from 
imparting to him the doctrines of her own religion. 

A woman is a better guardian for a boy in his early child- 
hood than a man, but it would be all the better if a gentleman 
and his wife were appointed from the beginning, provided the 
selection was a really happy one, and they were both well-bred 
people in the trye sense of the word. 

But this English governess or governor and governess will not 
be enough. She or they will of course be of the greatest help 
in giving the child a good training which is even more important 
and essential than education by means of books. But the young 
prince should also have an Indian teacher who can instil into 
him the essential principles of his religion and teach him to read 
and write his own mother tongue with accuracy and elegance. 
Great care will have to be taken in selecting such a man. Ordi- 
nary pundits and moulvis will not be of much use, they will do 
more harm than good. After all, one has to confess that the 
selection of the right people for either of the two appointments 
is a matter of luck. When the Prince is a little more advanced 
in age, he will need proper teachers. These it will be easier 'to 
find than the guardians in whose hands they were placed in their 
ihfancy. Both governors and teachers ought to maintain strict 
discipline without over-aweing their pupil and leavening his 
character with fear, which often breeds cowardice and habits of 

Above all the young prince must learn to be a true patriot, 
loving his country and wishing to secure for her all the good that 
is attainable, one essential element of which sentiment ought to 
be fearless and sincere loyalty to the Imperial Government whose 
jprotectipn will for a long time to come be indispensable for her 
very existence. 

I wish now to say a few words about a matter which though 
not essential, * is of considerable importance in many ways***-! 


mean the matter of costume and dress. Every young Indian 
ought to be taught to dress neatly and in clean clothes, but I 
would not by any means encourage Aim to adopt a wholly Eu- 
ropean or pseudo-European costume. This is still more im- 
portant in the case of a young prince. His patriotism, his re- 
verence for his own ancestors and for his religion, ought to keep 
him from adopting a foreign constume when his own traditional 
costume is so picturesque and neat. Gaudiness and barbaric 
splendour are not essential parts of the Hindoo or Moslem costume. 
Men and women of good taste know what is, neatest and most 
becoming in tlie way of dress, and they have no cause for altering 
it in any essential way. 

And last but not least those entrusted with the training and 
education of the child should do their best to develop in him a 
sense of pity for and sympathy with poverty and suffering, and a 
desire to relieve it not by indiscriminate chfority such as the feed- 
ing of faqirs and other showy ways, but by real well-considered 
methods of affording relief. The scope of this feeling should 
also be widened and extended so as to embrace both animals and 
men. Cruelty to animals often found in little children is the 
outcome of curiosity rather than cruelty of nature, and might 
easily be converted into acute sympathy leading to a real love of 
all living things and a delight in helping and protecting them. 

Presidential Address at the Eleventh Mo- 
hammedan Anglo-Oriental Educational 
Conference held at Meerut on-the 30th 
December, 1896. 


YOU are no doubt aware how reciters at our Moharram 
Passion Plays often preface their performances with the 
excuse of sore throat as a deprecation in advance of ad- 
verse criticism on the part of their audience. I have no such 
excuse ready to offer, but none the less I feel over-powered with a 
sense of my own unworthiness of the honour you have done me in 
choosing me $s your President, and I rely entirely on your indul- 
gence to deal leniently with me if I fall short of your expectations. 
I invite your attention now tp the business before us. In 
the course of the three sittings of the Conference at which you 
have assisted, the Standing Committee has laid before you a full 
report of all that has been done during the year now closing, 
and all that it is proposed to do in course of the next. It 
is for you to decide how far your representatives have been suc- 
cessful in furthering the purposes of this annual gathering; where- 
in they have failed and why ; and what steps should be taken to 
ensure a further and continued advance all along the line towards 
the goal we have in view. 

It may be asked, what is the goal we are seeking and what 
progress have we made on the road which leads to it ? I think 
most of you will agree with me that our aim and object, as that 
of every people and nationality that is not quite lost to all self- 
respect, are, and must be, not only to preserve the name and 
honour of our forefathers unsullied, but to keep ourselves for 
ever on the forward march, and so to order our national life 
that in the field of moral and intellectual progress we should 
always be taking a step in advance ; for you must remember 
that there is no such thing as rest or quiescence for man. We 
are so created that we must be constantly moving, and it de- 
pends on ourselves whether our progress is forward or retrograde. 
And this law applies to nations equally with individuals ; we 
cannot escape from its operation. It*would simply be ridiculous 
for us to delude ourselves into the belief that we might wait and 
rest a little ; that the hour for action had not yet arrived ; that 


the future would, perhaps, prove a more propitious time for us 
than the present. The train that is carrying us, is moving on an 
incline, and with every inch speeds faster and faster downhill 
towards the abyss, making it more and more difficult for us to put 
on the brake and reverse our course. The time for talk, if it 
ever was, is past and gone ; the time now is for earnest action 
and honest and hearty endeavour. There is no use now nothing 
to be gained by recalling the past and reminding ourselves and 
others what fine fellows we were at one time and lamenting over 
our degeneracy. From the day we lost our splendid possessions 
in Spain to the meetings of the present Conference at Meerut, 
these notes of Idmentation have been sounded in our ears until 
we are sick of them all. It is an unmanly occupation : let us 
relegate it to old women and imbeciles, and turn our attention to 
matters of fact and to things of more practical moment to us and 
to our ends and aims. 

One of these same matters of fact to which I would call your 
attention and one of the most prominent of them, is that 
an honoured member of our community the most pre-eminent 
Mohammedan, in fact of our day has, at the cost of labour 
of a life-time and of unsparing energy and devotion, at last 
succeeded, as you know, with the help of suchi friends as his 
earnestness of purpose was able to gather round him, in provid- 
ing for us a sure and infallible 1 means of national regeneration in 
the institution which he has founded. This institution is as yet a 
mere foundation, and it is, as you know, beyond the power and 
energies of any one man to complete the superstructure. No 
mortal, if he lived as long as Noah and was as patient as Job, 
could hope to accomplish it single-handed. I am here reminded 
of a little story that I remember reading in a Persian text-book 
when I was a boy. The story is that a bird (probably a crow, 
who is both curious and a great chatter-box) observing one day 
a tiny mite of an ant engaged in laboriously carrying little grains 
of sand out of an enormous heap on one side of a nalah and 
depositing it on the other, was curious to know what it all meant, 
and asked the ant, " I want to remove the heap yonder, " 
replied the ant. " Don't you know, my good creature, " observed 
the crow, " that if you were to live a thousand years, you could 
not carry away a tithe of it." " Of that I am well aware, friend," 
replied the ant, " but there is a young one of my race whose hand 
I am seeking, and her parents have vowed not to bestow her in 
marriage except on him who will remove yonder heap of sand to 
the other side of the nalah, where they have their nest. I have 
undertaken the task, and I am resolved not to be deterred or 
daunted by its difficulties. " 

Gentlemen, Sir Syed Ahmed Khan's position with reference 
to the task Jhe has undertaken seems to me to be somewhat simi- 
lar to that of the ant in this story, unless his effort*) are seconded 
by all his co-religionists, or, at any^rate, by the more intelligent 


and influential portion of the community. And this I am per- 
suaded you are all prepare^ to do. I am sure you will not allow 
his labours to be lost, or watch the goodly edifice he has raised 
crumble to dust for want of co-operation and help. I do not 
think that, in fact, there is a choice left to you. On the one hand, 
you might unite together and carry on this great work to its end, 
and earn the approbation of your contemporaries and the 
gratitude of posterity, or you might let the opportunity slip and 
earn nothing but shame. I repeat gentlemen, you have no choice 
between these two courses ; and I do not wish to sepm even for a 
moment to hesitate in predicting which course you will take, 
let who will take the other. 

Gentlemen, you have listened to the reports read to you and 
you have marked the tone of despondency in which Sir Syed 
Ahmed Khan speaks of the way in which his appeal on behalf of 
his life-work has been responded to. The truth, however, is 
that Sir Syed pitches his expectations too high. In this respect, 
he is like a loving parent or kind teacher who scolds a favourite 
son or pupil because he has come out at the bottom of the pass- 
list in an examination instead of at the top, where he wished to 
find him. 

I hope my^revered friend and those who share his views will 
pardon me, if, with due respect, I remind them that they have 
no ground for such despondency, for the sick do not always 
realise their condition ; that as yet the number of those who realise 
the benefits of modern culture is not large ; and that we have 
hardly yet left behind us the time when fathers of families amongst 
us were satisfied with the teaching obtained in private schools 
presided over by ignorant pedagogues, who for a small pittance, 
taught bad Persian to our children, and when the few who aspired 
to higher education confined their attention to theology and the 
sciences accessory thereto. Let me remind them that our country- 
men at large are not yet reconciled to the idea of having to pay 
the Doctor or the Dominie, and that their minds have not yet 
got rid of the conviction that the one and the other are bound to 
render us their services free and for nothing. The idea of pay- 
ment is a new idea, and it will be some time before it takes deep 
root in the daily life of our people. We are beginning to perceive 
that it is one of our first and highest duties to spend out of our 
substance on the education of our children, but the idea has yet 
to be brought home to our hearts and raised into a motive power 
affecting our conduct in practical life. I, therefore, repeat that 
my revered friend Sir Syed Ahmed and those who share his views, 
are not yet justified in pitching their expectations so high. The 
response they have hitherto received to their appeal, however 
inadequate, is nolJ of a nature to justify such despondency, though 
there is nodoubt that, if the whole of the Mohammedans of India 
were alive to fheir needs and requirements tftid realized the danger 
of inaction, they could in a moment satisfy the highest expecta- 


tions and farthest aspirations of their well-wishers, and spread 
the means of national education fron* one end of the country to 
the other. 

We must, nevertheless, admit that the help that the movement 
identified with the name of Sir Syed Ahmed Khan has hitherto 
received is inadequate. It is inadequate both as to the 
quantity and quality of the assistance given. It is in- 
adequate in quantity because, though it has been found suffi- 
cient for making a good start, it is not enough for placing the 
means of National Education on a firm and permanent basis. It 
is defective in quality inasmuch as the money aid has come from 
a few liberal Native States and patriotic individuals, and does not 
furnish a true measure of popular sympathy with the movement, 
which alone is adequate to insure it a permanent and perennial 
existence. With your permission, I will discuss these two points 
at some length, as they are both germane* to the objects of the 
Conference and to its principal aims and ends. 

You are aware that every civilization has its own ideals, 
and that the stage to which a country has reached in the scale of 
civilization may be estimated by the mode of life of the people 
inhabiting it, and their way of conducting their daily business 
in other words by the way in which they are accustomed to deal 
with their points of contact with one another and with the outer 
world. We Indians, in our day, had attained a certain state of 
civilization that had its own ideals, and we lived our lives and 
dealt with daily problems that confronted us in our contact with 
the world, in a manner that fitted in with those ideals. Now, 
however, we are invaded by a new and superior civilization, and 
our brethren of the other Indian communities, who are not per- 
haps so tenaciously attached to their old ideals and old ways as we 
Mohammedans, have wisely abandoned or are abandoning them, 
and have adopted, or are fast adopting, the ideals that go with 
this new civilization and are ordering their lives in adjustment 
with them. The awkwardness of our position is increased still 
further by the fact that, while compelled by circumstances to 
adopt some of the new ideas, we obstinately turn our faces from 
others. A very trite and common-place example of this is to be 
found in the hundreds who use the railway for travelling and yet 
are unable to wean themselves from their old-world disregard of 
punctuality and time. Or again, look at the way in which Mo- 
hammedans clamour for Government service and complain, if they 
do not get it ; and yet how few will take the trouble of qualifying 
themselves in accordance with the standard that is required. It 
is therefore our first duty, if we would not be left behind, cheer- 
fully and without compulsion to adapt ourselves to the new civi- 
lization for time will one day make us if we 4 n 't and adjust 
our modes of thought and, practice to its requirements. In the 
old days, sons of gentlemen used to receive a sort of rough mili- 
tary education and this satisfied their aspirations.* Those who 
desired the learning of the day, spent laborious years in the 


study of Theology and the sciences accessory to it. Learning 
in those days had nothing iji common with matters mundane, and 
if it had any influence on mundane matters, it was so slight and 
casual as hardly to deserve notice. 

Now, however, the tables are turned ; modern science has in- 
vaded every walk of life ; modern social organization and the 
daily avocations of life, hinge on the results of knowledge. The 
fruits of inductive research have revolutionized the world. No 
one can now hope to make the most of his life and live it out fully 
who ignores this fatt. Even warfare, that we Asiatics*are accustom- 
ed to regard as the very antipodes of book-knowledge, is entirely 
dependent upon it. Trade and commerce and all the industries of 
the world owe their prosperity nay, their very existence to 
Science. A judge cannot adjudicate between litigants, nor a 
Collector administer the revenues of his district, without it. The 
moral and intellectual ideals of the world, together with the 
standard of material well-being have made an immeasurable 
advance. The question therefore for us now is, how are we to 
obtain a share of this knowledge so as to participate in some 
of its fruits ? 

Gentlemen, I had occasion some years ago to visit a Japanese 
man-of-war. Jhe Commander, an officer of fine presence and 
evident ability and intelligence, received me with the greatest 
courtesy and hospitality and showed me all over the vessel. In 
the course of conversation, I introduced the subject of Japanese 
progress, and observed that Japan had furnished the world with 
a practical refutation of the universally received doctrine, that all 
progress was gradual and that no country could hope to rise by 
sudden leaps and bounds. The officer acknowledged the compli- 
ment but modestly remarked that although they, the Japanese, 
were making every effort to improve themselves, it was nevertheless 
up-hill work and they had to contend against heavy odds. We 
Indians, however, he went on to observe, had it all made easy for 
us. We had found a capable guardian and instructor who was 
teaching us without our having, like the Japanese, to take all 
the trouble ourselves. 

I have a shrewd suspicion that the astute Japanese meant to 
be somewhat sarcastic, nevertheless I take what he said to be the 
sober truth. I hope every Mohammedan feels, as I do, that never 
at any time in history has it been our lot to enjoy the facilities 
for self-improvement and peaceful progress with which we are 
surrounded under British rule and which would have been abso- 
lutely impossible had not Providence rescued us from the anarchy 
so graphically described by my esteemed friend Sirdar Mohamed 
Hyat Khan in his speech the other day, and placed us under the 
enlightened protection of Great Britain. 

It should, therefore, be our pleasure an d^ pride to acknowledge 
the truth of fehe remark made by the Japanese Officer, and we 
should be grateful to an All-ruling Providence for having sent us 


a kind and considerate teacher and guardian to lead us out of 
darkness into light, I do not, in the least, share the sentiments 
of Mohammedans in certain parts of lAdia who now and then make 
unreasoning complaints against the alleged partiality of Govern- 
ment to other nationalities. If you look into the matter, I think 
you will find that what they really complain of is not the partiality 
but the impartiality of Government towards all sections of its 
subjects. What they really want is that Government should 
relax in their favour the policy of strict impartiality which alone 
is consistent with the dignity of a powerful Government. They 
hanker after privileges, which in my opinion, and 1 hope, in that 
of all right thinl^ng and self-respecting Mohammedans it would 
be as unjust for Government to grant, as it would be unmanly 
and undignified of us to expect. 

But, gentlemen, the means provided for our education by 
Government are all of the nature of State institutions and we are 
aware that it is out of the power and scope of State aid to provide 
for the peculiar wants and requirements of any particular section 
or race, for the State can only take in its purview the wants and 
requirements common among all sections of the community placed 
under its rule. But we Mohammedans cannot rest satisfied with an 
education that takes no account of our special needs. This kind 
of education is denationalising, and therefore prejudicial to our 
interests. No education can be beneficial to us that ignores the 
religious element which forms*the only bond of union between us. 
We belong to different races and nationalities : there are Arabs, 
Mogals, Persians, Turks, Rohillas, Pathans, Hindoo converts and 
others amongst us ; and what welds us together into one people 
with common aims and interests, is the strong tie of religion. 
If we ignore this tie and cease to reckon with it, we cease to be 
a people. 

Government schools and colleges are no doubt excellent in- 
stitutions far be it from my thoughts to find fault with them 
I was myself brought up in Government institutions and have 
ample reason to be grateful to them ; but I still stoutly 
maintain that the education given in Government institutions 
is insufficient, if not injurious, to Mohammedans. In the 
course of the sittings of the present Conference, some of the 
speakers have touched on the way English education imparted 
in ordinary schools affects the religious tendencies of the weaker 
of their Mohammedan pupils. The indictment is perfectly true. 
Boys that attend these schools from early youth grow up ignorant 
of the vast mass of oral traditions, religious tales, anecdotes, etc., 
which form the folk-lore of the Mohammedans, and which, under 
ordinary conditions, exercise a distinct influence in the formation 
of character. They cannot help knowing the simple tenets of 
Mohammedanism, but it is a knowledge with thd element of faith, 
of reverence, left out of it, rfnd is devoid of vitality and life. They 
grow up uhtrammellfed by the sanctions of theij religion and 
accustomed to treat its discipline with levity. Our Scripture 


history, the lives of our Prophets and Law-givers, are unknown 
to them; and though well versed perhaps in the history of England 
and even of Europe, they ire in complete ignorance of their own 
history. Their morals and manners are little looked after. 
They acquire offensive ideas of personal liberty, far removed from 
that true liberty taught us alike by the best in our own old 
literature and in the literature of ancient and modern Europe a 
liberty that hugs the shackles of self-discipline and duty as its 
best ornaments. But not to dwell on these, education does not 
consist in the mere acquisition of a little knowledge or the knack 
of solving a few mathematical problems ; its functions are much 
higher. It should teach us to distinguish truth from falsehood, 
and draw valid conclusions from the occurrences of daily ex- 
perience ; it should discipline all our faculties ; it should make us 
acquainted with the best that has been said on topics of import- 
ance by the wisest of former generations, and fit us to bring this 
knowledge to bear on 'the practical conduct of life ; it should in- 
spire us with a burning desire to be ever moving onward, ever 
taking a step in advance ; it should teach us to be sincere in our 
daily life and considerate of others ; it should bring us up to exalt 
public good above our own, and to respect others as the most 
natural corollary of respecting ourselves. These, I take it, 
should be the! principal aims of education, if we mean to make 

men of our children. 

I ask you now, is this aim attainable in State schools ? Cer- 
tainly not. The aim in all State institutions is and must be 
limited to the passing of certain examinations. This is a very 
narrow road no more than a foot-path, I am afraid and one 
who treads it, can be expected to see neither to the right nor to 
the left of him. The passion for passing examinations becomes 
so absorbing that it leaves him neither time nor temper for any 
other discipline. The getting up of cribs, or the committing to 
memory of abstracts of text-books, is a feverish occupation, and 
its votaries soon cease to relish healthier pursuits. Is it to be 
wondered at, then, that the ordinary result of this process turns 
out to be so deplorable ? 

One sometimes hears Europeans complain that our youth, 
graduates of our Universities, are wanting in manners ; that their 
information on ordinary topics is so very limited, that no enter- 
tainment is to be got in conversing with them; that though they are 
ready to talk about books, their talk even about books is borrowed 
from cribs ; that they have a very superficial knowledge of the 
social and political concerns of their own people and cannot dis- 
cuss them with insight or intelligence ; that in forming opinions 
on the most serious subjects they seem to be burdened with no 
sense of responsibility, or to realise the necessity of previous 
preparation. While, on the contrary,the old-fashioned people 
among usthose who have not had the benefit of this training 
but were brought up in the old style are much more capable 


men, more dignified in their bearing, more courteous in their 
manners, with a wider and more intelligent acquaintance with 
matters of local interest or practical utility, though their acquaint- 
ance with modern book-lore might be very limited. 

I do not wish you to think that I endorse all this formidable 
indictment, and I most earnestly entreat that you will not run 
away with the idea that I condemn all State education. Schools 
and colleges supported by the State are excellent institutions, 
provided with most able teachers and professors, who do their 
best for those entrusted to their care. Nor do I condemn our own 
youth. Do we not encounter numerous instances of high ability 
among them ? Can we forget the distinguished Bengalees who 
have attained a European reputation for scholarship and original 
research, and who are an honour and a source of pride to us all ? 
What I mean is simply this, that the system which the State is 
compelled to adopt is not suited to the national circumstances of 
the Mohammedans. 

This being the case, we need not be surprised to find that 
Mohammedans have been backward in availing themselves of the 
education offered in Government schools and colleges. Very like- 
ly it was the instinct of self-preservation that inclined them from 
the first to take the matter into their own hands, ajid, as is usual 
in the economy of the world, this national motive found embodi- 
ment in the person of our revered friend whom we find seated 
at this table today. 

Gentlemen, if you were to ask me how the idea of national edu- 
cation took hold of Sir Syed Ahmed's mind, I could not explain 
it in any other way. I confess I am puzzled to account for it. 
He does not belong to the present age : he is like the fly in a piece 
of amber. He belongs to a class whom one would expect to see 
preaching in a mosque instead of leading a band of pioneers in 
modern advancement. He does not seem to care how much he 
is abused or vilified, but goes on doing his appointed work and 
carrying out his self-imposed task. 

We must be content to believe that he was chosen by Provi- 
dence to rescue us from degradation and death ; and well has he 
carried out the work of his life, for not only has he accomplished 
what he undertook, but, what is perhaps more important, he 
has, by the example of his life and by his writings, sown broad- 
cast the seeds of advancement amongst his co-religionists, so that 
even his slanderers and enemies have derived nourishment and 
sustenance from them. 

To secure for ourselves the kind of education we want, we have 
to provide, first of all, a sound religious training for our children. 
This is to be obtained not simply by appointing competent in- 
structors but by vigilantly enforcing their teaching. 

We need, secondly, a s6und moral training : this is not to be 
obtained, I 'entreat you to remember, by merely committing to 
memory a string of moral maxims ; it has to be instilled into the 


minds of the young, by discipline and example, by a training that 
should influence motives .and help towards the formation of 

We have, thirdly, to provide a healthful training for the body: 
a good deal of misconception is prevalent on this point among 
Indian parents ; many of them look upon games and sports as waste 
of time ; they do not realise that the care and cure of our souls 
is impossible, unless we look after the bodies in which they are 
confined and which are the vehicles of our education. You can- 
not expect that spirit of true independence of Character and 
readiness of resource, and that self-reliance and self-control 
which you would like to find in your youth, without due attention 
to physical education. 

You need, fourthly, to secure the services of proper teachers 
to carry out this programme : depend upon it, a mere drudge can 
never be a proper school master ; you cannot at this time of day 
educate your sons by employing a pedagogue on a few rupees a 
month as people used to do not long ago ; European education 
can be properly imparted only by Europeans, and even these 
must be carefully chosen, for there is no use in importing incompe- 
tent teachers from Europe ; you must have good men and true, 
capable men, -of birth and breeding, who will be sympathetic 
towards the lads entrusted to them, and who will make men and 
gentlemen of them ; once you h$ve found such teachers you 
could not make too much of them ; they should be looked upon 
and treated as our best friends and benefactors. 

The fifth and last item that I wish to name in the list of the 
equipment we need for carrying out our programme is to provide 
proper boarding establishments, both for those who come from 
a distance and those who live near the College ; for it is absolutely 
necessary above all things, that the entire life of the boys under 
pupilage should be controlled by their teachers, and that their 
hours of recreation and play, no less than their hours of instruc- 
tion, should be influenced by them. 

I need hardly go into further details in speaking to you, who, 
I am sure, know better than I do what is really wanted. But 
you can form some estimate from what I have said of the immense 
resources needed for an institution that should satisfy all these 
requirements. The College at Aligarh is no doubt in a flourish- 
ing state, but you must not imagine that it is all that it should be, 
and that no further efforts are needed in this direction. Look at 
the Colleges attached to the older Universities in England, and 
think of the princely incomes with which many of them are endowed. 
What has been achieved at Aligarh, is only a foundation that, 
will crumble to dust, if it fails to receive adequate pecuniary 
support. The hdp it has hitherto received from its friends and 
well-wishers, especially from His Highfaess the Nizam of Hyder- 
abad and sonje other Indian Princes, is no doubt muAificent and * 
entitled to ow* gratitude, but it is far from being enough : what we 


want is an endowment that will secure the institution from peril, and 
assure its existence on the lines on ^hich it has been founded. 
So much for the magnitude of the aid required. Next, let us 
consider what I have called the quality of the help. Now, there 
are some sixty million Mohammedans in India, and if each of them 
contributed a pie every year towards this national undertaking, 
we should have an income of some three lakhs. If only a tenth 
of the population came forward, the College would still have 
thirty thousand a year. But granting that the estimate is too 
high, and thai no more than one per cent of 'the population is 
able to appreciate the situation, the College would have an income 
of three thousarfd rupees per month, if each of the six hundred 
thousand Mohammedans that the number amounts to, contri- 
buted a pie per mensem. All this no doubt looks like an idle 
juggling with figures ; but it, at any rate, goes to prove that, 
if the people were to rise to a due appreciation of what they need 
in the way of education, it would be an easy matter for them to 
found and endow an institution no whit inferior to Rugby or 
Eton, or Trinity or Balliol. From the fact, therefore, that such 
help is not forthcoming, and that the work has advanced so far 
only with the aid of a very small number of contributors, we are 
obliged to conclude that the matter has not yet 4;aken hold of 
the national conscience. 

Gentlemen, all our hopes for the future are centred now in 
the Conference which brings together a largo number of educated 
Mohammedans every year, and enables them to exchange views 
and talk over their experiences, and on their return to their 
permanent or temporary places of residence, to become active 
centres for the diffusion of these ideas. If I have not grievously 
misunderstood the whole matter, this kind of missionary work is 
one of the chief functions of the Conference, every member of 
which is in duty bound to act as a eatechist and colporteur of 
its educational teachings. 

In the course of the three days during which the Conference 
has held its sittings, some of the speakers have eulogized the 
Conference, and some have found fault with it, and I have no doubt 
both the praise and the blame are well founded. But, gentle- 
men, you will find that no great movement of this nature was ever 
inaugurated that was free from little errors and flaws, nor need 
this dishearten us so long as the movement itself is infused with 
life and activity. And, so far as I am able to see, I find your 
present movement full of elements of life. A movement that, 
after ten years of existence, does not show any signs of decline, 
but is, on the contrary, supported by increasing numbers every 
year as shown by the figures submitted to you by the Secretary, 
can hardly be said to be feeble, much less dead 

If the Conference had performed none but simple missionary 
functions, I should still say that it had justified its Existence, 


You are aware that our Law binds us to pray five times 
a day ; it further enjoins us to pray in company, if possible, in 
the mosque nearest our homestead, but better in the Jami with 
a larger congregation. Twice a year we are enjoined to attend 
public prayers outside the town or village, where the entire adult 
population is supposed to congregate. At least once in our life 
time provided we have the wherewithal, we are enjoined to say 
our prayers in the Haram at Mecca. Are these injunctions devoid 
of meaning ! Certainly not. For, leaving alone matters spir- 
itual, is it not apparent that there could be no better means of 
creating good will and fellow-feeling among the followers of a 
religion that was preached not to one nation eft country but to 
the whole world, than to provide frequent means of bringing 
them together ? Even such, I take it, is the value of the large 
gatherings which the Conference encourages, and in inaugu- 
rating the movement* you have only been imitating the wise 
policy of your own Law-giver. 

But I do not for a moment admit that the Conference had 
done no practical work. When I see this commodious pandal 
full of faces like a huge National Album, and find their owners all 
eagerness to listen to all that is said here on the subject nearest 
to their hearts, I confess I am filled with a feeling of most 
pleasing surprise. Had not your kindness brought me 
to Meerut from a distance of some fifteen hundred miles to assist 
at the meetings of the present Conference, and had I not seen 
the gathering with my own eyes, I could not have believed it 
possible : I could not have believed that the Mohammedans had 
made such immense strides within such a short period of time. 
I am quite certain that twenty-four years ago, when I left my 
country to take service in the Deccan, a gathering of this kind, 
for purely national purposes and not prompted by official influence, 
would have been impossible. And seeing this, I am obliged 
again to acknowledge that this immense change has been brought 
about by the influence of the one man whose old and battered 
personality has been your guiding star so long, and whose efforts 
and those of his friends and supporters, have not only made 
such a national institution as the Aligarh College a reality, but 
have supplied the motive power that has led to the organization 
of the Mohammedan National Anglo-Oriental Conference. 

Gentlemen, I, for one, cannot look upon the Conference apart 
from the Aligarh College. To my mind they are both branches 
of the same tree, blossoms of the same sprig. The aim and end 
of all our efforts here or elsewhere are to support and carry to a 
successful issue the work started at Aligarh. There might be 
diverse ways, but the goal is the same. 

Gentlemen, education has in these days risen to the dignity 
of a Science, and a most difficult science it is both in theory and 
in practice. /But one of the greatest difficulties which education- 
ists have to Encounter, arises from the fact that every individual 


with a smattering of the three R's as they are called, thinks him- 
self an expert on education, entitled ti have a voice in the matter. 
I hope the friends and well-wishers of the College at Aligarh 
will avoid wrecking their efforts on this shoal, and will leave all 
practical details to the Professors and others who have given 
their lives to the actual business of instruction. 

Then again those engaged in the training of children have to 
keep themselves abreast of the times, since new methods and 
new principles are being brought to bear almost every year on 
this Art in England, Germany and other countries. It is not 
enough for the teacher now to know the subject he is set to teach. 
He must know a great deal more. If he has to deal with the 
plastic material of little children, he must be especially careful 
what burden he puts on them so as not to disturb the balance 
between body and mind. He has to think of the order in which 
different branches of knowledge are to be imparted, how best 
moral and religious principles are to be instilled, languages taught, 
and time so economized that his pupils might go out into the 
world well equipped for pursuing that higher and truer education 
which only begins when school education is ended, and which 

endures all our lives. 

Now, with your permission, I venture to offer yoil some advice, 
not in the role of a teacher, which I am far from being qualified 
to assume in your presence, but simply as a friend who wishes 
you well. 

First of all, I would urge you to realise that in all undertakings 
of a public character, purity of motive is an abiding element of 
success. A man who enters on a philanthropic undertaking for 
the sake of notoriety or from some other personal motive, is seldom 
successful ; and even where his activity ends in some good to 
others, you will find that he never does any good to himself. 

I need hardly refer you on this text to the well known story 
of Hazrat Ali and the criminal. How, when sentence was passed 
on the latter and he was being whipped in the presence of the 
Khalifah, he spat on his face. How Hazrat Ali, on this, im- 
mediately stopped the punishment, and when questioned about 
his proceedings, said that he was afraid of a feeling of revenge 
vitiating the purity of his motive, if he continued the punishment 
after the personal affront that he had received. 

I would next beg you to consider whether or not I am right in 
saying that, in all national undertakings, small, separate efforts 
are a mistake, that it is best to unite together and concentrate 
our strength. A weight that can be lifted by the strength of 
a hundred men when labouring together will defy the efforts of 
ten men working separatelv. If we look to it tfhat our motives 
are pure and there is union ^amongst us, we may rest assured that 
the grand work we are engaged in will come to a good end and 
success will crown our efforts. * 

Last, but not least, I would not forget, if I were you, that all 
the different races amongsi^ whom we live in India are children 
of the same soil and should therefore be like brothers to us, and 
it is our duty to live with them in brotherly love and amity ; their 
success is our success ; their failure our failure ; they are our 
natural friends and supporters, whom it would be suicidal to 
alienate from us by any act of our own ; it would indeed be both 
bad morals and bad policy. 

In conclusion, 1 need hardly point out to you that the laudable 
undertaking in whfch we are all of us engaged would Jbe impossible 
except under a strong, just, and benevolent Government such 
as that of Her Imperial Majesty the Queen, in pursuing our 
national interests, it therefore behoves us to remember this with 
gratitude, and hold ourselves ready, should trouble ever come, 
cheerfully to give our lives in its support ; and it is also our duty, 
I take it, to cultivate* this same sentiment of true and rational 
loyalty in our children, so that they might grow up loyal and 
peaceful citizens of the greatest Empire that the world has ever 
seen, and take pride in knowing that they belong to it and can 
claim all the priceless privileges it confers. I have not the least 
hesitation in saying that the Mohammedans of India yield to none 
in their loyalty to Government, and I am confident they will 
never waver ill their course, or incur the odious charge of ingrati- 
tude to their benefactors. T 

Gentlemen, now that I have finished what little I had to say, 
I will beg last of all that, when in your daily devotions you pray 
for yuur Queen and your country, your relations and your friends, 
you will not forget to include me in the list of these last, and will 
remember me in your prayers. 

Speech as President at the Dinner given 
by the Members of the Nizam Club on 
the 20th of June 1897 in Honour of Her 
Majesty the Queen's Diamond Jubilee. 


WITHIN the next day or two there will probably be not a 
town in the whole of the civilized world where British 
subjects will not have assembled, as we are assembled 
here to-night, to wish long life and all the blessings of 
heaven to our beloved sovereign the Queen, for the Queen's Empire 
extends over about a third of the inhabited portion of the globe, 
and her subjects are to be found in the rest,*.extending the 
commerce and influence of the mother country. In this assembly 
to-night some have the privilege of being British subjects, living 
under the kind and benevolent protection of His Highness the 
Nizam, while some are the direct subjects of His Highness who 
is an old and honoured ally of the Queen's Government, enjoying 
the priceless benefit of her friendship, and both are assembled 
together to bless our sovereign Lady, and wish her long life, 
on the completion of the sixtieth year of her reign, one of the 
longest ever recorded in the world. 

But, gentlemen, the Queen's reign is not only one of the longest 
ever recorded, it is an unparalleled reign in every other way 
(hear, hear), for if you divide the whole of the known past of the 
world into several periods of sixty years, you will not find any 
such period to match with the sixty years of the Queen's reign 
in the progress made by the world in all directions of human 
activity. I should have to detain you all night if I attempted to 
enumerate even the mere heads of the discoveries and inventions 
of the period, the progress made in adding to the comforts and 
conveniences of life, in the means of locomotion and communica- 
tion, in the development of steam and electric power, in the im- 
mense strides made in the diffusion of knowledge, in the exten- 
sion of political freedom, in the suppression of slavery and in a 
thousand other directions, 

I will only draw your attention to one or two of these, which 
seem to me to be peculiarly personal to our Queen. One of them 
Is the immfense progress made during her reign in all that ap- 
pertains to the relief of human suffering and degradation, and 

here her influence, her keen personal influence, and that of her 
high-souled consort, the late Prince Albert, are conspicuous as 
the mainsprings of the measures taken fron time to time, from the 
building of the first refuge for waifs and strays in London, to 
the last Zenana hospital in India (cheers). Though others have 
worked, the impetus has corne from her. She has borne no or- 
dinary measure of suffering and sorrow herself, and her heart 
is ever tender and sympathetic to cases of sorrow and suffering 
among her subjects. The messages of condolence and kindness 
that she has sent K to people thus tried during the sixty years of 
her reign would, it is said, fill a volume, and her kctive charity 
to those in distress among her own immediate^ dependants and 
the tenants of the royal estates, would mount up to a fortune. 
In her Scottish property of Balmoral there is not a tenant, I 
believe, who is not personally known to her, or has not received 
some benefit from her royal hands. (Hear ! hear !). But t< ere is 
another direction in which personal influence and the purity of 
her life have conferred priceless benefits. I mean on social life 
and on literature. (Hear ! hear ! ) It is during her reign and 
through her influence, silent or active, that the last remnants 
of coarseness surviving from the licentious times of Queen Anne 
and the Regency, have finally disappeared. And it is also owing 
to her influence that the so-called weaker sex has achieved its 
emancipation, and taken its proper place in the economy of the 
world. She has shown the world how a woman so highly placed 
can live a life of holiness, a life devoted to public duty, in which 
nevertheless no domestic duty, the duty of a wife or a mother, 
however small, should ever be neglected. For you must not 
imagine that the sovereign of constitutional, almost republican 
England holds a sinecure, and has nothing to do. (Hear ! hear 1) 
The Queen, they say, has never enjoyed a complete holiday, 
and the greater part of every day of her life on the throne has 
been occupied with onerous work, dealing with affairs involving 
immense and far-reaching issues, and requiring a tact and know- 
ledge of the world and of practical politics almost beyond the 
conception of people like ourselves, who have never seen an. ex- 
ample of a like life in a like position. (Cheers). And yet in her 
domestic relations no Hindoo wife was ever more faithful or Mus- 
alman mother more devoted than the Queen, and the whole of the 
thirty-odd years of her widowhood has been consecrated to the 
memory of her beloved consort ; and in good work, self-sacrifice, 
devotion to duty, and holy living she has realized the ideal of 
Hindoo Satteedom, which recognizes the sacrifice of the body on 
the funeral pyre, as easier and of less merit than a life spent as 
she has spent it. And in the due performance of the social func- 
tions of royalty she stands unrivalled. Her unprecedented 
popularity not only in England but all over Europe, is the result 
partly of the blameless life she has lived^ and partly of the supreme 
tact with which she has, during the sixty years of her reign, up- 
held her posijion as Queen of a constitutional Empire, amid the 


fierce strife of party polities at home, and of rival ambitious 
on the continent of Europe, In fact, fit may be truly said of her 
that she is the greatest living support of monarchic ideas in these 
democratic and anarchic times, and has done more for the cause 
of peace and order and true liberty than any other living sovereign 
or statesman. And, gentleman, we must not forget our sover- 
eign's peculiar claim to the love and loyalty of us, Indians, 
for, when in previous times did we ever enjoy such peace and 
tranquility, such freedom to develop our personal activities in 
all laudable directions as in her reign ? At 4he best of times 
India was never at peace in the old days. If one province was 
tranquil, a neighbouring province was disturbed, and men lived 
their lives from day to day in fear of what the morrow might bring. 
Now all is changed and we have no fear of any kind from year's 
end to year's end, if we are well behaved and law-abiding. When, 
again, was education so general as it is npw, and when was an 
Indian subject such an absolute owner of his handiwork and so 
free to dispose of the fruits of his labour or ingenuity as he might 
please ? And as for political freedom, that is a growth of time, 
and we enjoy as much of it at present as is good for us. As for 
those who go about talking of freedom and equality, prancing 
before deluded audiences in borrowed plumes, raiding cries that 
fall as false notes on Indian ears, and singing the Marseillaise 
to crowds, who have never in history stood behind barricades, 
or dreamt of questioning constituted authority, all I can say is, 
that they do not know what they say. If we had complete poli- 
tical freedom, depend upon it we would not know what to do 
with it. There is not a race in India that is prepared for it. 
Let us, my friends, first free our souls from the rust of centuries, 
train ourselves in the ways of duty and self-sacrifice and devo- 
tion to public good, and prove to the world our fitness for the 
exercise of political freedom before we hanker for the gift, and 
when we have done this, I am sure the boon will be given to us 
without our asking. 

Gentlemen, our religion enjoins us to be law-abiding. We 
are commanded to obey God, obey His Prophet, and the ruler 
over us for the time being. We are commanded to love and obey 
a sovereign placed over us, whatever his religion or nationality 
may be, if he gives peace and does not interfere with the due 
performance of our religious duties. How much more then are 
we bound to love and reverence and obey our present sover- 
eign who not only confers on us these great advantages, but 
many more priceless benefits past enumeration, and not enjoyed 
by another subject race in Asia. In our books, moreover, a 
sovereign is often entitled Zil-ul-lah, or the shadow of God. But 
this is only applicable to good kings, just and merciful kings, 
who truly represent God on earth, whom God ch&rishetb and who 
cherish their subjects andf love and protect them kings who 
exemplify in their person the old Arab saying, namely, that the 
"Ruler of men is verily their servant." * The nhnYw 


apply to the rulers whose misdeeds disgrace history, and who 
look upon everything and cSVery body placed under their power 
as if they were created by God only to pander to their appetites. 
(Hear ! hear !). Our august sovereign, the Queen of Great Britain 
and Empress of India is the ideal Zil-ul-lah, for has she not all 
her life enjoyed the direct protection and care of the Almighty, 
as even she has protected her subjects and cared for them. We 
live and flourish under her shadow, as she under God's. And, 
Gentlemen, to us Indians our beloved sovereign has shown her 
love in a special rtianner. Not only has she always evinced the 
keenest interest in our well being and well doing, but she has 
marked her loving kindness for us by learning cfur language and 
employing Indian servants on her staff. It is for us a privilege 
indeed, to be subjects of such a sovereign, a priceless privilege, 
as people will tell you who have travelled abroad. Therefore, 
I call upon you to pray to the Lord our God to bless the Queen 
and give her length of days, for though she is old, men and women 
have lived much longer, and neither England nor India can spare 
their beloved sovereign. And I call upon you to drink the toast 
of the Queen Empress of India. God bless and spare her ! 

The toast was drunk amidst cries of Amen from all present. 

The peom ^ entitled " Beata Victoria" was composed and 
published on this occasion, and is printed among the verses at 
the end of this collection. 

Address to the Students of 
M.A.O. College, Aligarh 

I HAVE no doubt some of the seniors amongst you have already 
been introduced to Speculative Ethics in the course of your 
studies, and are familiar with the attempts that have from 
time to time been made to solve the old riddle of right and 
wrong. Islam, as you probably know, is divided into two great 
camps on this point, by far the more numerous of which believes 
that Revelation furnishes the only test, while the minority recog- 
nises Reason as the ultimate court of appeal. But if you have given 
any thought to the matter, you must have perceived that whether 
Utility or Conscience, or the Moral Sentiments, or the Fitness 
of things be accepted as the real test, whether Revelation 
be appealed to, or Reason, in the last resort, hunfyn conduct is 
independent of all such speculations. You do not refer to Mill 
or consult Bentham in dealing with your fellowmen, your motives 
are governed by sanctions with which Speculative Ethics has 
nothing to do. Now, if you will look a little closely into the matter 
you will find that the question is somewhat puzzling. Certain 
outlying fields of human conduct that concern the peace and 
integrity of society, you will find, are protected by what are called 
legal sanctions, so that you cannot infringe on the rights of your 
fellowmen without incurring penalties the extreme limit of which 
is loss of life. But there is a vast region, you will find, left un- 
touched by legal sanctions ; the law does not punish you for being 
untruthful in private life, or for betraying a friend, or for over- 
reaching an enemy. For these several distinct sets of sanctions 
have been offered for our acceptance from time to time. Reve- 
lation, as interpreted to the mass of its believers, attempts to 
act on the love of pleasure and fear of pain inherent in human 
nature. The Mullah admonishes us to govern our conduct by 
hope of Paradise in the life to come and fear of Hell, and paints 
for us in exuberant colours the pleasures of the one and the 
tortures of the other. These are the sanctions enforced by Islam, 
such Islam at any rate, as is preached from pulpit by the majority 
of our teachers. I shall come presently to another and a much 
higher interpretation of this doctrine. But let us inquire first 
into the efficacy of these sanctions. As far as one can see, the 
hope of Heaven or the fear of Hell has not prevented any re- 
vealed religion at one t peri6d or another of its development from 
'degenerating into a mere* religion of forms and ceremonials, as 
is the case with Islam now. Werg these sanctions really felt 


to be binding, they would surely be supported by society and 
enforced by means of social penalties. Is morality so enforced 
in Moslem Society ? Is not the criminal who escapes the just 
punishment he has incurred by some legal subterfuge or quibble 
received back with open arms by his equals, if he has not the 
fatted calf killed for him ? Is the man caught perjuring himself 
boycotted by his fellows ? Is not official corruption looked upon 
as a venial offence, when it is not admired as clever speculation 
in risks ? Are there not professed vendors of divine favour 
whose private lives are steeped in the most indecent profligacy 
for which justification is shamelessly sought in distorted inter- 
pretations of sacred texts ? Matters have indeed come to such 
a pass that a long beard and short trousers are recognised as 
the only signs of orthodoxy, and Morality has no place in the 
teaching of the Mullahs whose breath is spent in depicting the 
ravishing pleasure of a sensual Heaven and the fearful tortures 
of Hell. Some even go so far as to look upon too great a 
strictness in matters of principle as un-Mohammedan. Pecu- 
lation is in practice held not to be inconsistent with piety, and 
honesty in money transanctions is an exception with the priest- 
ridden rather than the rule. This state of things is predicted 
with unerring foresight in a remarkable passage of the Nahj-ul- 
Balaghat, a work which, whether for purity of teaching, pro- 
foundness of observation, or supreme terseness and felicity of 
expression is without a parallel in the literature of Mohammed- 
ans. Rendered into English it prophesies that " A time will come 
to men when nothing will remain with them of the Koran but 
the letter, and of Islam but the name ; when Mosques will be 
replete with architecture, but depleted of righteousness ; when 
their denizens and their builders will be the wickedest of the 
denizens of the earth from whom will emanate all mischief and 
among whom will find shelter all sin. " I have nothing but admira- 
tion for the few simple, pious men whom those hopes and fears 
enable to live a blameless life, but I hold that for the 
majority they have proved a failure. They have failed to es- 
tablish a high standard of social morality or to conduce to cleanli- 
ness of life. And it was only natural that they should fail, for 
who ever heard of any heroism called forth by fear, or any grand- 
eur of character developed by love of sensual pleasure ? If 
you educate children on these motives, if you supply them with 
no higher ideals, you will never develop in them the manlier 
virtues of truthfulness, courage, generosity ; but cunning, crafti- 
ness, hypocrisy they will be safe to acquire. These are motives 
with which you may train animals but not men ; even animals 
on occasions betray a consciousness of being somewhat above 
them, as witness the love and faithfulness of the dog and the horse. 
If man is to be superior to other animals in something more than 
mere speech, which is at times a racher doubtful acquisition, 
he must prove himself possessed of those loftier qualities which 
lie in a plane above the earth and seven heavens, and rise superior 


to the grovelling level of sensual pleasure and pain. And what 
motives for striving after this ideal character, can you ask for 
superior to love of honour, pride of manhood, scorn of coward- 
cie, and above all, faith in the might and eternity of truth and 
the goodness and glory of god ? 

This is identical in spirit, if not in the letter, with that higher 
interpretation of the Islamic doctrine to which I referred in speak- 
ing of religious sanctions, as you can satisfy yourselves by refer- 
ring, among other teachers, to the utterances* of AU the purest 
and most spiritual of Islamic heroes, or consulting the works 
of Gazzali the greatest of Moslem divines. Let me cite a noble 
passage from the former in support of my contention. 

<k I do not worship Thee, O Lord t from fear of Thy Hell or 
hope of Thy Heaven. I find Thee worthy of worship and there- 
fore I worship Thee. " In another place occurs the following 
passage :- 

" The servants of the Lord are divided into three classes : 
those who worship God from fear, theirs is the service of the slave ; 
those who worship God seeking reward, theirs is the service of the 
hireling ; and, lastly, those who worship God out of love, and 
theirs is the service of free men. This last is the truest service 
of all. " 

Take the following from the Ihya-nl-Oloom of Gazzali : 

That is to say " Purity in the service of god implies that the 
Service is rendered without expectation of recompense in either 
world. This is as much as to say that the pleasures of self whether 
before or after death are calamitous, and the man who worships 
God for the sake of securing personal enjoyment by the grati- 
fication of his desires in Paradise is misguided, the truth being 
that nothing should be desired except the pleasure of God. " 

One of the greatest heroines of Islam, Rabia* is quoted in the 
same book : 

46 1 do not worship Him from fear of His Hell or love of His 
Heaven to be like an evil hireling, I worship !ttim out of love 
for Him an$ longing Jowrfrds him. " 

If you wish to be good Mussalmans and free men, endeavour 
to be without fear ancj without reproach in the sanu) spirit. 


You will find that all t?ie great men of the world belong to 
this school irrespective of caste or creed. Its teachings are of 
universal application, and its obligations are rooted in the very 
nature of man. You, who are in constant contact with men 
trained in similar teachings, men of high culture and noble char- 
acter, and have their example always before you, you will not 
fail, I hope, to imbibe their spirit and learn to base your conduct 
on higher principles than the paltry concerns of self. I hope 
you will learn truthfulness from them and devotion to duty, 
not because you arc compelled thereto by pains 'and penalties 
but because you do not choose to demean yourselves by uttering 
a falsehood, or be untrue to yourselves by neglecting a task you 
have freely undertaken to perform. I hope you will realise in 
your lives that death is preferable to the cowardice of a man 
who is afraid to tell the truth, and that there is no disgrace greater 
than the disgrace of being false to your plighted faith. 
This, as I understand it, is in part the sense conveyed by 
the Arabic word hurriat upheld so high in the older literature 
of the Arabs. Not law, not custom, not even the terrors of 
Hell itself should deter \ou from uttering the truth. And be- 
lieve me if you are not afraid of telling the truth, your courage 
is of proof ancfyou will fear neither man nor devil. Truthfulness 
is the highest form of courage and the fountain head of all other 
virtues. It is the crown of manhood, without which manhood 
has no dignity, no true honour. And remember that it is not 
only in great things and on great occasions that you are called 
upon to uphold truth, you should endeavour to be truthful in 
every relation of life, however trilling, and realise that though 
an occasion may be small and trivial, truth itself is never trivial. 

Short as has yet been its career, the example of your College 
and the tradition to which it has given rise are already influencing 
other Colleges and other nationalities. Let us see you establish 
in even a greater degree the tradition of unswerving integrity 
and high sense of honour. The graduates of Aligarh are noted 
for their good manners, their esprit de corps, their love for their 
alma mater, and their superior morale ; let them in future be 
distinguished in a still greater degree for their zeal in upholding 
what is right, in scorning what is wrong, and in keeping their 
reverence for their faith and their loyalty to their sovereign un- 
sullied under all temptations. 

This was the lesson of your revered founder. It was his 
aim through life to inculcate a high ideal of conduct and a true- 
hearted loyalty to the Queen. He wanted the children of his 
race to grow up under the influences, with which it was 
his aim to surroupd them, into true Mussalmans and useful citi- 
zens. Perhaps it was because he was aMussalman and descended 
from a noble and influential family apd therefore ail the more- 
readily able to place himself in the position of our rulers, that he 
had such a /lear insight into their difficulties and such a *just 


that royal field of tournament before him, with his back to the 
Great Rock, facing heroically the onslaughts of advancing years lives 
this sage of Hyderabad supported by his loving and devoted wife* a 
scholar herself, a centre of quiet domestic happiness to his progeny 
and an object of reverence to many like the miter. 




25 th August 1925. 

* Edith Boardman, M. D. (Brux.) ; L. S. A. 1890 : Royal Free Hospital. Reg 
1891. (Retired). 6. Hyderabad, d. Captain John Walker Boardman. m. Nawab 
Syed Husain Bilgrami, C.S.I, ed. London School of Medicine for Women. Formerly 
Phys. and Surgeon, H.E.H. the Nizam's Service, Hyderabad. Publn. " Zorah " a 
tale of Zenana life. Club. Lyceum, London. Address, Rocklands, Saifabad. Hyder- 
abad. " The Medical Who's Who." 


estimate of what should be our o m attitude towards them. 
He was able to see that it was our duty to be obedient and loyal 
and that a hostile attitude towards Government was not only 
undutiful, it was unsafe for our own prosperity and peace, and 
detrimental to future progress. As a politician and statesman 
he was a thorough unbeliever in what are usually called free 
institutions. He had no faith in the efficacy of majorities, and he 
had a sovereign contempt for political agitation and all its 
juggleries. When therefore the Congress movement was set 
on foot he threw the whole weight of his authority into the 
opposite scale and effectually prevented the great body of Moham- 
medans from joining it. To say that he was actuated by meaner 
and less unselfish motives in opposing the Congress, is to belie 
the whole tenor of his life and labours. His patriotism was of 
a much higher type, and his insight into public affairs was much 
truer than his opponents are able to imagine. 

Nothing has occurred since Sir Syed's death to alter the po- 
sition. The considerations which prevailed on him to withhold 
his support from the movement are in full force still. No man 
of sense and experience is deluded into the belief that the Gov- 
ernment has yielded to the pressure of the Congregs in conceding 
a modification of the elective principle in the constitution of 
our Legislative Councils or in resorting to competitive exa- 
minations in the recruiting * of the Subordinate Civil Service. 
Both these measures are based on administrative considerations 
quite apart from any popular agitation. What the movement 
and the numerous offshoots and outcrops of the movement have 
really done is to discredit Indian representatives in England, 
shut the door of further indulgence and put back the hands of 
the clock by at least fifty years. The leaders of the Congress 
must be blinded indeed by their pseudo-parliamentary zeal if 
they are not alive to these results. The day is not distant when 
even their eyes will be opened and they will begin to see the mis- 
take they have made. They will see that the importation of the 
Shiboleths of democracy does not make India democratic, they 
will see that the adherence of a few radical members of 
Parliament, does not make the Congress a real Parliament, 
they will see that because now and then a few unimportant 
privileges are thrown to the people, like sugar plums scattered 
among school children, India does not cease to be a conquered 
country held by military force, nor does the Government of India 
cease to be an autocratic Government albeit a wise and bene- 
volent one. I hope you will never be enticed by the siren voice 
of any agitator, European or Native, and join the movement 
under the delusion that you will thereby become a member of 
" Her Majesty's opposition. " That is a term belonging to a 
peculiar phase of party Government which has no meaning in 
India. I hope you tvill inever swerve from the traditions left 
behind him by your illustrious founder, which I am happy to see 
are loyally upheld by his successors in the College ; and will never 


foul the line, on which yo{ir special work is carried on, on the 
wire-entanglements of political agitation. Indian political life 
such as has been chalked out by our friends of the Congress is 
a cul de sac on which the words " No thoroughfare " are written 
in blazing letters. The door of political life, however, is not 
altogether closed to you ; there is a wonderful amount of help 
you might give to the State if you threw yourselves into the work 
well equipped to carry it on. He takes an ignoble view of the 
duties and privileges of citizenship who betrays no interest in 
the welfare of his country. But I would have you work on a 
different plane altogether from that of hostile agitation. I would 
have you prepare yourselves to take an intelligent interest in 
the great economic problems of your country, so as to be able 
to form opinions that may be of value to the State. I am afraid 
very few of the common run of political agitators know anything 
of the real problems that concern the welfare of the masses and 
care less about them. They are concerned mostly with the 
interests of the so-called educated classes, and are bent on self- 
aggrandisement. If you wish really to advance the interests 
of the country you should take a sounder and a wider view of 
the duties of citizenship, and instead of hampering and embar- 
rassing Government with vexatious criticism and ill-natured 
mispresentation, help it with the fulness of your knowledge 
in the difficult task of reconciling conflicting interests and better- 
ing the condition of the dumb millions who have no spokesmen 
to represent them either in the Congress or out of it among their 
own countrymen. I really believe that in India the only people 
who give anxious thought to the welfare of the masses are our 
English administrators. Educated Indians know little about 
them, as I have said, and care less. If some of you really 
wish to make yourselves useful to your country, here is a field 
for legitimate activity, virgin ground that you may plough and 
from which you may reap a rich harvest. But I warn you that 
if you wish to busy yourselves with such questions, you must 
not only approach them with laborious preparation, you must 
not shrink from much sacrifice of personal interests, and you 
must expect no reward except that of an unselfish duty nobly 
undertaken and, let us hope, ably discharged. 

The one thing to remember in this connection is that true 
patriotism does not consist in going about vapouring all over 
the country about matters outside our sphere of activity, but 
it consists in contributing, as much as lies in our power to the 
strength and integrity of the Empire and the peaceful progress 
of its inhabitants. The Aligarh College movement is a patriotic 
movement, the movement our Hindoo brethren have set on foot 
at Benares to give themselves a national college like yours is 
a patriotic movement. The movement originated by my own 
august Master, His Highness the Nizaln which led to the forma-, 
tion of the Imperial Service Troops, was a measure of the highest 
patriotism. Anything in fart that any native of India can do 


to promote peace and security, to L^^ove the economic, social 
and intellectual condition of the people, to strengthen the de- 
fences of the country, or, to develop its resources is patriotic ; 
and loyalty, genuine true-hearted loyalty to Government is the 
most patriotic of all. For in upholding the strength and autho- 
rity of Government, you uphold the only conditions under which 
it is possible for your country to rise from its fallen condition 
and to take an honourable position in the comity of nations. 
And remember also that the loyalty of fear i$ no loyalty at all. 
A man who i obedient to Government because he is afraid of its 
power is not a gpod subject, he is a rebel at heart and loyal only 
by compulsion. This is servitude, while the free obedience of a 
truly loyal citizen is a matter of honour and pride. You will not 
have forgotten the treachery of the Turkish Generals who handed 
over the Danubian quadrilateral to the Russians in the war of 
1877, or those others who by withholding* timely help made the 
glorious defence of Plevna and the heroism of Ghazi Osman of 
no avail. Well, these Generals were not patriots, and the very 
existence of such treachery at the time of the war proves the 
rottenness of the state of Turkey. It shows that while the 
soldiers and the great body of the people were heroic in their 
loyalty, the governing classes, the sons of Circassian and Georgian 
blave girls, the Pashas who lived on the fat of the land, betrayed 
their country and brought it to the verge of extinction. 

Talking of the Turks reminds me that a wave of sympathy 
passes every now and again over India giving much exercise to 
the minds of simple folk who like good Mussulmans are deeply 
interested in the fate of the only Mussulman State in Europe, 
little knowing that the same evils that have led to their own 
downfall in India, and are keeping them back from prosperity 
and progress, are also at work in Turkey and have shorn her, one 
by one, of many of her most valued possessions. Turkish rule is 
hated in Arabia, it was hated in Egypt and gave rise to the 
national movement against it of which Arabi Pasha was the 
leader. The Christian nationalities subject to Turkey to whom 
successive sultans have made valuable concessions, are still 
discontented and sometimes in actual revolt. The more 
thoughtful of the Turks say of their own country that " If 
it were not for the balance of power in Europe, the country 
would be gone." What then is the reason ? The reason is that 
the forces of fanaticism and ignorance have, as with us in India, 
kept the ruling people back from participating in the progress 
of the world, while a race of Pashas of very attenuated Turkish 
blood has risen between the Sovereign and the people, corrupt 
to the core, who have usurped all authority. They keep the 
people down and intercept all royal favours for their own benefit. 
They make it impossible for men like Gazi Osman or Khairuddin 
JPasha to obtain influence^ at Court or guide its counsels. The 
young Turk of the progressive class, like yourselves, is kept in 
the .background, and men of integrity and honour are not 


allowed, to remain in the service of the State. Ghazi Osman was 
exiled from the Capital and appointed Viceroy of H ijaz only to 
be recalled soon after when it was found that the straight- 
forward soldier interfered with the perquisites of the Hijaz 
officials. I am not repeating newspaper gossip, but actual his- 
tory related by Mussalman travellers whose sympathies were 
strongly Turkish and one of whom was himself a Turk. There 
are signs of some slight improvement under the present Sultan ; 
public education, I believe, is better attended to and some attempt 
is made towards an organised administration, btft the fact re- 
mains that to be a Turkish subject is still a doubtful privilege, 
and no Indian Mussalman would find there the general amnesty 
and the personal liberty he enjoys under British rule. As a 
Mussalman, I feel a lively sympathy with the Turk and interest 
in his fate, and the best that I can wish and pray for him is, 
that he may soon be able to make his rule as strong and efficient 
as ours. 

To return to the subject that brought me to speak of Turkey, 
patriotism is not to be confounded with a vain hankering after 
political privileges for which we are not prepared and which we 
should abuse if we had them. Patriotism consists in unselfishly 
seeking the good of your country and the benefit of your country- 
men in the many ways that are open. And as patriots and lovers 
of your country, your own advancement in the work you are 
engaged in at Aligarh, is your first duty. It is not enough that 
you are members of a first class institution under excellent teach- 
ers, you should feel the duty of using your opportunities and 
making strenuous and unremitting efforts to qualify yourselves 
not only to be graduates of the university but really able and 
accomplished men with the hall mark of Aligarh on you. It 
is for you to make that mark a mark of honour all over India, 
and a guarantee that it is carried by men who may be trusted 
wherever they may go, and whatever position the chance of 
life may place them in. 

Do you know what enthusiasm is ? It is defined in diction- 
aries as " inspirations as if by divine possession or superhuman 
influence. " That is the literal meaning from the Greek. It 
is a spark of the divine lire which enters into noble souls and 
carries them beyond themselves in the pursuit of a generous 
cause. It rouses them into a great rage at stories of human 
wrong and suffuses their eyes with moisture at recitals of heroic 
deeds of unselfishness or courage. Its inspiration is divine ; 
its promptings are holy. It floated Jasan to Colchis ; it made 
Socrates quaff the poisoned bowl ; it guided Moses in the wil- 
derness and spoke to him on Mount Sinai ; it led Christ to the 
cross ; it exilecj Mahommed to Medina ; it led Hossain to 
martyrdom; it sent Mansur to the scaffold; it brought Syed Ahmed 
to Aligarh ; and it speaks to you tonight from the mouth of one 
of the humblest of his friends. If you have a spark of it in your 
nature, guard it with care, *let neither agfi nor misfortune 'dim 


its brightness, for it is the source of all that is good and great in 
the world, and a balm for all evils. 

My young friends, I have spoken to you as I would speak to 
my own children, in all love and affection. If I have ventured 
to give you advice, some of it not quite palatable perhaps, I have 
done so for your own good. Here you have many friends and 
well-wishers prepared to give you their tenderest care. But once 
out of Aligarh, and thrown on the wide world, you will have onlv 
yourselves to depend upon. It is then that? what you have 
acquired here,* all the wise counsel you have received from your 
teachers and fri*nds, will stand you in good stead and be your 
voiceless guardian in your struggle through life. 

To come now to the minor concerns of your life in the College, 
I understand that some of you are not free from the vice common 
to many University students in India of shirking your studies 
until the last quarter of the year, and then putting on a spurt of 
work towards the end to pass the examination. Now, I have 
passed through the mill myself and can therefore speak with 
some authority on the subject. My experience of such cram- 
ming, and no one will deny that it is sheer down-right cramming, 
is that the odds are rather against than for the nl^n who relies 
on this kind of work for a pass. A book-maker would think 
twice before lie took four to^one against him, provided he, the 
student, was not a duffer, and then he would take no odds what- 
soever, for a duffer has no chance at all in such a game. But I 
hope you are not working for a mere pass. Judged even from 
the bread-and-butter point of view, a mere pass without the im- 
plied knowledge and discipline of which it should be the token, 
is not of much value. The market value of a degree is very low, 
and the young man who merely works for a pass, is playing fast 
and loose with his chances in life. One has constant and painful 
experience of this in the business relations of life. If one wants 
a man for even a small post requiring some ability, mere ordinary 
and not any out of the way ability, he has to reject many B.A's 
before he is suited. Now I maintain that if a young man of 
ordinary intelligence works steadily through the four years of 
his College course, he will have acquired at the end of his last 
term an amount of not exactly culture, for that comes after- 
wardsbut solid marketable training that will have fitted him to 
enter on any after career that he chooses for himself with fair 
chances of success. And I think the book-maker of whom I 
have spoken, will be prepared, if he understands his business, 
to take longer odds on him at the examination. If I was the 
book-maker, I would work entirely on that system and bribe the 
Proctors (Heaven save the mark !) to obtain correct returns of 
the daily work done by each candidate during th first six months 
of the working year of eight or nine months. So much for a mere 
bread-and-butter view of academical work. For those who 
aim ^at something higher and wish \n after life to be known as 
cultured men, for theln steady work and careful attendance at 


lectures are matters not CH choice but of necessity, for no one 
can prepare himself for after study on which all real culture and 
scholarship depend, unless he has been through the discipline of 
the whole period of his undergraduate career. In fact which- 
ever way you look at it, you cannot afford to miss the excel- 
lent discipline which four years of steady work in the College are 
calculated to give you. And looking at the matter from another 
point of view, do you think it quite honest to shirk your work 
during the major, or indeed, any part of your course ; do you 
think it is quite fair to your parents and guardians who spend 
their money on you, believing that you are giving them their 
money's worth in work, or quite dutiful or even courteous to the 
professors and teachers who are giving their best for your bene- 
fit ? I think not. I think a right-minded young man cannot 
help feeling that he is defrauding his parents and affronting his 
teachers if he does not do his day's work as he is expected to do. 

A word now about the study of English. English is a 
difficult language for us, and even when learnt well, its subtleties 
often escape us. In my own school days 1 found a constant use 
of the Dictionary a great help, not one of those dreadful small 
Dictionaries in small type, which seem to mn to have been in- 
vented in the interests of the professional oculist, but any 
large Dictionary such as Webster's Unabridged, of which I had 
a copy. And now that I am for tatting out secrets and telling 
tales out of school, I may as well tell you that, at the outset 
of my schooling. I learnt all my English from a book of Fairy 
Tales, Robinson Crusoe, and old Gulliver. These three were 
my first masters, and my love tor them will last through life. 
Later in my school days, my love was transferred to Sir Walter 
Scott, Dumas, Goldsmith, and that American Goldsmith, Irving. 
I remember to this day the exquisite delight they gave me, and 
I am happy to say I take a delight in them still. I was not in- 
troduced to the magic of Thackeray, and Dickens till I had en- 
tered the University, and then not by my Professors but, as I 
love to remember, by my father. The other purely literary works 
exclusive of poetry, which influenced me in those days, if I re- 
member right, were Goethe's Wilhelm Mcister, Buckle's Civili- 
zation, Lewes' life of Goethe. Macualay's Essays which have a 
morbid kind of fascination for the raw youth, Knight's Half- 
hours with the Best Authors, Helps' Friends in Council, Com- 
panions of my Solitude and Essays, and a few other books. 
Looking back now, in the light of later experience, it seems strange 
to me that I was not attracted to the great prose-poet and stimu- 
lating Master, Carlyle, although he was then the vogue. Among 
scientific books, I remember, Tyndal's Monograph on Heat, 
Grove's Correlation of Physical Forces, some of Huxley's Scien- 
tific and semi-Scientific Essays ; Sir William Hamilton and 
Victor Cousin exercised the greatest fascination on ine. There 
were a few others of less importance. The two books that were 
my greatest aversion, were/ if I remember right MacFarlane's 


History of India, and Payne's Mentd and Moral Science which 
came into my life at different periods of my school career. 

It seems strangely egotistic in a public address to lift the 
veil from a portion of one's own private life, and thrust a bit of 
autobiography on one's hearers, but it occurred to me that you 
students might find it interesting to compare notes with one 
who has gone through the same mill that you are going through, 
though at a period so remote from the present as to be a matter 
of ancient history. t 

I must say* in the end that I am grateful to Nawab Mohsin- 
ul-Mulk, your able Honorary Secretary, and your worthy 
Principal Mr. Morison for allowing me the privilege of addressing 
you to-night. I do not know when I shall have the pleasure of 
meeting you all again, enjoying the fine climate, and sharing 
in the stimulating influences of Aligarh, bitf you know that you 
have always my good wishes wherever I may be and that my 
best sympathies are always with you and your work. 

Reply to an Address presented at Aligarh, 
on the 18th of February 1900. 


I TAKE the cordial reception you have given me here to-day 
and the flattering terms in which you have spoken of me, as 
the outcome of that spirit of brotherhood and kindly feeling 
for which Mahomedans are still noted all over the world. Believe 
me I feel very grateful for all your kindness, especially as coming 
from a Mahomedan seat of learning unique in its way, and a 
centre of advanced Mahomedan thought towards which are 
turned the eyes of all who have not yet abandoned hope of the 
future of ourrace and religion. I cannot help feeling however 
that I am indebted for it all to >^our hospitality and kindness, 
rather than to any merit of my own. 

You have referred in your address to what you are pleased to 
call my services to the College, but when I think, not of what I 
have done, but what I might have done but have left undone, I 
only feel be-littled by the value you so generously set on the very 
small and insignificant part I have been able to take in your 
affairs. The worth and usefulness of this institution and the 
principles on which it is founded are not unfortunately under- 
stood by all Mahomedans in some parts of the country as I 
have recently found, they are grievously misunderstood, but those 
who do understand its value, those by whom the noble and 
patriotic motives of its illustrious founder are appreciated, feel or 
should feel that for a living Mahomedan of our time and genera- 
tion, there is no duty higher than that of helping the Aligarh 
College all else comes after and takes the second place. Any 
Mahomedan who, having the means, lays it out elsewhere than 
for the good of the College robs his country and his people to the 
extent of the good that his contribution might have done. Any 
Mahomedan who wastes his substance on pomp and show 
and weddings and the like, robs the college and robbing the college 
robs his country and his race of what rightfully belongs to them. 
This in my humble opinion is the attitude which we Mahomedans, 
at any rate, thos'e of us who have not the plea of ignorance or 
prejudice to put forward, should assume, towards the College. 
This is the only right view to take of the matter, and if those 
of us who think they have helped the movement were weighed in 


the balance according to this standarcn they would, I am afraid, 
be found wanting. They have not done enough, they ought to 
have done more. 

It is otherwise with those who do not understand and cannot 
appreciate the work which the illustrious founder of the institu- 
tion initiated and his successors, the Nawab Mohsinul-Mulk, 
Mr. Morison and their colleagues are so nobly carrying on. 
Many are prejudiced, that is to say they have prejudged the case, 
have made up their minds against it without enquiry, and they 
will not understand. There are others who do not know good 
work from bad ajid they cannot understand, men whose ignorance 
is their misfortune and not their fault. These two classes of 
men, those who deprecate the work from sheer " cussedness " 
so to say, and those who do not really know its value, are ex- 
cusable ; we can understand their holding aloof or refusing to 
help us, and it is our duty, I take it, to combat as much as possible 
the prejudice of the one and enlighten the ignorance of the other. 
I think if some of us were to undertake this missionary, this 
proselytising work, we should make many converts ; for, after 
all, few are foolish enough to refuse a good thing when it is offered 
to them ; and if these men had their eyes opened, if they only 
saw that we were prepared to give them good value for their 
help, they would, I have no doubt, accept the "bargain with 
alacrity arid pleasure. 

For what we arc offering them here is not sham but reality, 
sweet nourishing, luscious fruit, not the dry bitter stone like the 
stone of the mango from which the flesh has been sucked away. 
It was on this that the great founder of the college spent his life 
and substance. It was for this that men like your late principal, 
Mr. Beck, lived and died, and your present principal is devoting 
the best energies and the noblest impulses of a refined and schol- 
arly life. Their one aim has been to provide for us a training 
that should raise us from a dead into a living and breathing people; 
not to teach our children mere books for any pedagogue can do 
that but to educate them, to draw out all their activities, and 
train them to clean living and high thinking. 

Bread-getting is unfortunately a necessary pursuit, but 
manhood is not nourished on bread alone ; the spirit also has to 
be provided with good, wholesome food. But not only is manhood 
not nourished by bread alone, the spirit, you will find, is not 
nourished by books alone ; it is neither books nor bread that 
keep us alive. Books are tools of culture and bread is needed 
for the body, but what is really healthful for the whole man is a 
training that will, as I have said before, lead us to clean living 
and high thinking. This is the essence of culture ; for what after 
all is life \vt>rth if it is lived, as the animals live it, in the grati- 
fication of mere physical needs or in migrations 'from the blue bed 
* to the brotfn ? The -pleasure that is derived from the mere grati- 
fication of a sense is the lowest of all pleasures, common to us and 


the brute creation. The ral pleasure of life, the pleasure that 
distinguishes us from the lower animals, is the spiritual pleasure 
of duty performed and something added by our own striving to 
the sum total of human progress and human happiness. It is in 
other words the onward march of the ego, the self, the soul, the 
spirit, whatever you like to call it, the constant, and sleepless 
effort to rise above our surroundings from high ideals to ideals 
ever higher, until life is ended and we are resolved into the dust 
from which we sprang. 

Build thee hiore stately mansions, oh, my soul 

As the swift seasons roll ! 

Leave thy low-vaulted past 

Let each new temple, nobler than the last, 

Shut thee from Heaven with a dome more vast ; 

Till thou at length are free, 

Leaving thy outgrown shell by life's unresting sea I 

This is true education and not the mere teaching of books or 
the feeding of the body, and this is what your guides and guardians 
here are attempting to provide for you. It is for you to second 
their efforts and let the world see that there is at least one place 
in India where the higher ideals of culture can be achieved, and 
lives that wotdd otherwise wallow in the gratification of mere 
physical neecTs, can be touched to higher, nobler, and gentler 

If only every Mahomedan parent could be persuaded to 
believe that this is what is needed and what we are straining 
every nerve to provide at Aligarh, I am sure the noble Sir Syed 
Ahmed would rest peacefully in his grave and the future of our 
race would be assured. 

I would not have you believe, from what I have said, that 
books are of little use in education ; books are indispensable as 
tools ; they are the vehicles of culture and without them we 
should be debarred access to the wisdom of the ages and the 
noblest inheritance of mankind. But to participate in this in- 
heritance in full we must needs have recourse to Western learning 
and Western books. We have a noble literature of our own, but 
it is not enough ; it only represents one phase of thought. We 
must supplement it by the wealth of beauty and thought which 
has been accumulated in the West, and which is guarded neither 
by demon nor by dragon, but is free to all who will unlock the 
door and take possession of it. 

We took the best of our secular learning from the West long 
ago, and that debt we have paid with interest. But we made the 
mistake of taking only the dry bones of learning and leaving the 
spirit behind. For what we took from the Greeks was only their 
mathematics and f their metaphysics, their anatomy and their 
medicine; we neglected to take what to European nations has 
proved the noblest heritage of all, theft taste and thtir culture, 
their high and noble ideals of beauty, literary and intellectual, 


which, much more than their positive learning have influenced 
Western civilisation, and raised it to heights never dreamt of in 
the world before. By a strange fatality, in other words, we 
took all from the Greeks, except what was the most valuable 
among their possessions ; and we have, as I take it, paid for our 
error for centuries long by the grievous lack of that Hellenic 
spirit which permeates all modern life and culture as fragrance 
permeates the rose. Even modern morality is as much indebted 
to the Hellenic love of beauty as to other and more direct teach- 
ings, for there is a more intimate connection between the good 
and the beautiful than we are aware of, and those whose ideals 
of beauty are grbss and material can never rise to the heights of 
culture and refinement attained by nations who have been in- 
fluenced by Hellenic thought and Hellenic civilisation. We, 
therefore, look in vain in our history for those elegancies and re- 
finements, for that higher life of cultured leisure which is promoted 
in an essential measure by the fine arts, the arts of expression, 
plastic or literary the pursuit of the beautiful, in short, in its 
varied forms. 

We have failed equally in another sphere of activity, both 
speculative and practical, namely, the science and art of govern- 
ment, at once the greatest, and most important 'and the most 
difficult of human undertakings. And the cause again is the 
superficial and imperfect way*in which we profitted by our contact 
with Hellenic and Roman civilisation. As a nation we never 
went to the fountain-head of the teachings we were so eager to 
adopt, and therefore never attained to anything beyond the dry 
bones of mutilated and inaccurate translations. By accident 01 
design we never allowed ourselves to become permeated by the 
living spirit of the cultures with which we came in contact, with 
their free institutions ; with their representations of human 
passion and human failing ; with their criticism of life, or then 
interpretation 01' nature and humanity. 

Let us therefore take warning from the past and avoid falling 
into the same error again. Put not your faith in translations 
and do not take your teaching at second hand, but go to th< 
fountain-head and drink deep of its waters. Steep yourselves 
in the free spirit of Western methods and Western thought and 
with the powerful search-light you will thus be able to commanc 
look back on your own learning, if you like, and take renewec 
delight in its treasures. This, in few words, is the essence of th< 
teaching that we need, and this in some measure is what Aligarl 
strives to provide. But to arrive closer to the ideal we shoul< 
not rest until we have realized the dream of a great teachinj 
University for ourselves. Till we have found the funds necessar] 
for this purpose, our ends will only be half attained; we shall neve: 
be able to do the great things we wish to do and the teaching a 
Aligarh, superior as if is, ihust remain limited in scope and confinec 
necessarily to narrow grooves. Aligarh will never become thu 

distinguished seat of Western and Eastern learning that it 
ought to be, and we shall be as far as ever from striking out a 
path of our own. 

But we Mahomedans have received a nobler and more sacred 
inheritance than our secular literature and learning, namely our 
God and our Religion, and were our children to forget these in 
the turmoil of worldly pursuits however desirable, they shall 
surely perish, since a people who have abandoned their God and 
their Conscience are like sailors who have lost their moorings and 
are floating adrift' on a tempestuous sea without pilot or rudder. 

We therefore find that the wisdom of your founder and the 
watchful care of your trustees have made ample provision against 
such a lamentable eventuality, and your able secretary and his 
colleagues have it constantly in their thought that religious 
education should receive greater attention than ever in the cur- 
riculum of the school and college, and their efforts are nobly 
seconded by your Principal, than whom not the most orthodox 
Mahomedan trustee could be more zealous in this behalf, as his 
writings and speeches have amply shown. 

There is a feature in the training given here which distingui- 
shes Aligarh from every other college and school in India. The 
founder of fhe institution has, in his wise and statesman like 
foresight, provided that Aligarh should not only turn out good 
scholars but also loyal and intelligent citizens ; that, along with 
other matters, our children should receive here moral and political 
training of a character that should fit them to become useful and 
patriotic subjects of the Queen and a source of strength to the 
splendid empire to which we have the honour to belong. Ordinary 
common sense should convince you that this is the only attitude 
consistent with national happiness and prosperity, and the 
assured progress of the country. It is essential for your own 
happiness and for the continued prosperity of your country to 
know and believe that your destinies are in the hands of a wise 
and beneficent Government, and it is essential that your motives 
and your conduct should be shaped in the mould of that belief. 
Setting aside higher considerations, it is unwise and improvident 
to quarrel with a Government which you can never replace, 
except with anarchy and misrule. And it is to the last degree 
ungrateful to meet, with mean distrust and unworthy suspicion, 
the vast benefits you receive from those who are placed in power 
over your land. I am the last person to counsel a slavish and 
cringing attitude towards our rulers ; such an attitude 
is, to my thinking, inconsistent with true loyalty. But what I, 
in common with all your well-wishers, desire to see in you is that 
sturdy sense of citizenship, that true and manly allegiance to your 
Sovereign, which should be the cherished property of a nation 
not demoralised by long subjection to, an unjust and despotic 
sway. I wish to see you taking a just "pricfe in belonging to an 
Empire on which the sun never sets, an Empire that is essentially 


beneficent in its imperial policy, and what is more to the purpose, 
an Empire that holds out the only assurance of liberty and pro- 
tection left for us in the world. I should like you to feel, as I 
feel, that you would rather be a British citizen than the subject 
of any other ruler, Musulman or Christian, in the whole wide 

I am afraid fate has dealt most cruelly with you of late. First of 
all the gentle but strong hand and far seeing eye of your founder 
has been taken away from you, but you had still left one who under- 
stood his policy and had identified himself heart and soul with 
your interests. The untimely death of your late Principal, Mr. 
Beck, who may \ruly be said to have given his precious life in 
your cause, and who, while living, spent all his surplus earnings 
for your benefit, left you stranded in the world. But, as if these 
calamities were not enough, your affairs were brought to the verge 
of ruin by internecine quarrels which might have sapped the very 
foundation of the great institution to which you belong. Provi- 
dence however was good to you after all, and it was decreed on 
high that you should not perish. That accomplished scholar 
and able administrator who rules over you now, with noble self- 
sacrifice and disregard of private interests, threw himself into 
the breach and rescued you from ruin ; while the tacf and diploma- 
cy of the present Secretary, a valued friend and disciple of Sir 
Syed, the Nawab Mohsin-ul-Mulk, saved you from the evils of 
anarchy and succeeded in restoring harmony to the counsels of 
the College. I dread to think what would have happened if Mr. 
and, may I be allowed to add with respect and gratitude 
Mrs, Morison, had not come to your rescue and the Nawab 
Mohsin-ul-Mulk had declined the thorny seat at the head of youi 

And this gives me an opportunity for observing that not the 
least important, to my thinking, is the part played in your destin- 
ies by the noble ladies who have from time to time been connected 
with the institution. I hope you appreciate and are duly gratefu! 
for their silent influence on the tone of your school ; and I hope 
you understand and will in after life remember what a lofty par 
in human affairs can be played by a pure, good and culture< 
woman, and will come to realize that we can never hope to ris< 
to any height of national life unless we turn our efforts to th< 
elevation of our own womankind. You are having here an objec 
lesson of the most vitally important nature and I hope you wil 
benefit by it to the full and remember it all your lives. 

In conclusion I hope you will let me say a few words on an 
other subject intimately connected with your well-doing in th< 
world as members of what, I trust, is still a self-respecting com 
munity. We Mahomedans have received from our ancestor 
the acknowledged gift of good manners. We*have in our tim< 
set an example to the world in this respect, and I am happy t< 
believe we still have living examples before us in all Mahomedai 


countries of dignified deportment and courtly manner ac- 
complishments that add to the worth and respect in which their 
possessors are held. 

But unfortunately the younger generation in India, those 
especially who flock to our schools, are apt to forget that good 
manners is an important element in one's respect for oneself. 
They are apt to think an off-hand way of accosting their superiors 
and elders in age and experience, to be a sign of independence, 
while in reality it is only a symbol of caddishness and bad breeding* 
The first inference a stranger is led to draw, when h$ sees a young 
man behave himself without due regard to the demands of good 
manners, is that he does not perhaps belong to respectable parent- 
age ; that at any rate he is not used at home to receiving deferential 
treatment from his inferiors and of paying deference to those 
above him, which are the outward marks of a gentleman. Re- 
member that you owe it to yourselves more than to others to 
show proper respect where respect is due ; for, why and wherefore, 
otherwise, should you yourselves expect deference from others ? 
I have in my time heard a great deal from men ill-bred themselves, 
of what they are pleased to call the insolence and hauteur of 
Englishmen, but in my pretty large experience I have never 
come across ai) English gentleman who was not courteous where 
he was met by -good manners and courtesy from those who crossed 
his path. It is only ill-manners that irritate an Englishman, 
as they would irritate anybody, even if he had the temper of 
an angel. And let me beg you not to run away with the idea 
that forms have nothing to do with manners. Forms are essential 
and indispensable, in fact forms are the greater part of manners, 
though, to be really perfect, forms must have kindly feeling and 
sincerity behind them. There is also an artistic element in forms 
as symbols and exponents of manners, and the deportment of a 
really nice mannered man is pleasing to the sight. You should 
not therefore despise forms. Even with intimate acquaintances 
and friends, with one's own wife or brother or sister, forms of 
courtesy should be kept up if only to prevent familiarity breeding 
contempt. It is only when one has no regard for a person that 
one treats him without any show of ceremony. Pompous and 
stilted manners, it is true, are ridiculous as all affectations are 
ridiculous, but the abuse of a thing does not justify us in condemn- 
ing it when put to its proper use. I, therefore, hope that you 
will keep up your tradition of good manners, cherish it as much 
as possible amongst yourselves, and never let laziness or indiffer- 
ence lead you to disregard the obligation. 

And now my young friends one word more before I sit down. 
I hope you have lived long enough, young as you are, and have 
seen enough of life, at any rate of school life, to understand that 
the most vital element of all education is discipline. School 
life is the world in miniature, and, if you {Jo tfbt learn ttf command 
yourselves now and obey the command of those placed over 


you, you will never afterwards be fit to command others or take 
a manly part in the struggle of life. The world, unhappily, 
has no regard for tender skins, nor is the wind ever tempered 
for the shorn lamb. In life you will find yourselves constantly 
knocking your shins against the iron knobs of fortune, if you are 
not careful. However gingerly you may walk, you will not be 
able to escape occasional falls. The wiser and manlier part, 
therefore, is to let yourselves be prepared for it all, while there 
is time and before it is too late. Why should .you not let your 
guardians and teachers do for you now and with the gentle and 
considerate hand of a friend, what the world is sure to do for you 
a little later with a harsher and less friendly hand. If you will only 
think a little and try to look at the common sense of the matter, 
you will realise that this view points out to you the very root and 
essence of school discipline, and you will then be able to submit to 
it more cheerfully, knowing that you are thereby being saved 
in anticipation from many a bitter heart-burn and intolerable 
misery in after life. 

Last and by no means the least of all, let me thank you again 
for the kind things, much above my merit, you have let your 
spokesman, my friend Nawab Mohsin-ul-Mulk put into your 
address. I know his partiality of old, and I am rutch obliged 
to him, and to you all for all you have done for me during my 
short stay at Aligarh. * 

Presidential address at the Fourteenth 

Meeting of the Mohammedan Educational 

Conference held at Rampur, 

December 1900. 

YOU are aware that these annual meetings of the Confer- 
ence are intended to serve a three-fold purpose. In the 
first place, they promote friendly intercourse between 
the leading Mahomedans of different Provinces by bringing 
together many who would otherwise never have met. In the 
second place, they give people an opportunity of exchanging 
views on educational and other matters and of profiting by the 
experience of friends and co-religionists from all parts of India, 
and last and, most important of all, they enable the leadingmen 
of our community to meet and take counsel together for the 
promotion of our most intimate national interests and to take 
concerted action in that behalf ; * above all, they enable us to 
devise means for the promotion and spread of Western culture 
amongst us, and, as a means to this end, help the Mahomedan 
Anglo-Oriental College at Aligarh to the best of our ability ; for 
here we have ready at hand an institution founded upon 
principles, whose soundness has been recognized by the leaders of 
the community, and where a considerable amount of success has 
already been achieved. 

The Conference first organized by the late Sir Syed Ahmed 
Khan has now been in existence for fifteen years. He lived to 
assist at ten of its meetings, five of which were held at Aligarh 
and the rest at Lucknow, Lahore, Allahabad, Delhi, Shahjahan- 
pore and Meerut, respectively, and in their order. There was no 
meeting in 1897. The Conference met for the first time since 
Sir Syed's death at Lahore, 1899, and again last year at Calcutta, 
and, thanks to the exertions of Nawab Mohsin-ul-Mulk Bahadur 
both these meetings were successful. Down to the year 1888, 
the Conference only performed the functions of a consultative 
body ; it was not till the Meeting of 1889 at Lahore, that a 
practical direction was given to its deliberations by a proposal to 
organize local committees in different towns and collect funds 
through them for the support of the poorer class of students. 

The Conference, it will be admitted, marks a great stride in 
the history of progress from the time^wh^n the only occasion on 
which people collected together in Idrge numbers from distant 
parts of the country, were, the great fairs of India where in the 


midst of great frivolity, trade was advanced and commerce 
received a periodical impetus for the good of the country. Never, 
however, until Sir Syed Ahmed Khan and his colleagues thought 
of organizing a National Educational Conference, did the leading 
men of our community at any time meet together for the pro- 
motion of our common interests as we have met here today, nor 
was there any opportunity for Mohammedans of light and leading 
to get mutually acquainted, such as the Conference affords us 
now once every year. If you will look round t you in this very 
hall you will ftjnd many faces, which, but for this meeting, would 
never have beeij seen together, and if you will indulge your 
curiosity a little further, you will find that many of these dele- 
gates are able to exchange views in friendly meetings outside the 
deliberations of the Conference, and obtain valuable hints in 
educational and other matters in which they are vitally con- 

The last meeting of the Conference has, I have reason to be- 
lieve, stirred up the Mohammedans of Lower Bengal to a sense of 
their educational wants and elicited a public expression of views 
from several of the leading Mohammedans of that Province which 
cannot fail to be beneficial to the community. The principal 
and most important function of the Conference, however, at this 
moment is to place the higher education of the Mohaihmedatis on 
a firm basis by helping us to i^ake the great institution at Aligarh 
what it ought to be, so that it might become an abiding centre 
of thought and learning for the community. Our Government 
has generously planted schools at all the important centres of 
population, and brought education to our doors, but these institu- 
tions only supply local wants of a very limited kind ; we cannot 
ask Government to undertake any comprehensive scheme of 
national education for us. This we must be prepared to do our- 
selves and for ourselves, not by isolated efforts but by an earnest 
and effective combination of all the forces of the entire community. 
Without some such combination we shall never succeed in found- 
ing and permanently maintaining a high class institution capable 
of influencing the whole of the Musalman population of India. 

We usually take it for granted that every one is alive to the 
benefits of education, that at any rate every literate parent is 
convinced of the duty he owes to his children of giving them a sound 
education ; but in practice the majority of literate Mohammedans 
are accustomed to feel satisfied that they have discharged this 
duty in an effective manner when they have put their children 
under a village pedagogue at the door, or sent them to the nearest 
school. They think they have made an end of the matter, their 
consciences are satisfied, and they give themselves no further 
concern about it. The result is that in the majority of cases the 
children grow up in ignorance and are perhaps ted into jevil ways 
for which ihe parents $re primarily responsible. They are 
responsible because they have not taken the trouble to find 
out .what sort of education is wanted for their children and how 


it is to be obtained. But the plea of ignorance is no more tenable 
in a court of Law than it is in the Court of Nature, and they pay 
for their ignorance in the persons of their loved ones by not 
acquiring this knowledge. 

Educational needs and educational methods have gone on 
changing with the change of times. Once a man who could string 
together a few clever rhymes, found favour thereby at native 
courts or with native noblemen. Persian and Arabic penman- 
ship was another passport to emolument, and hundreds and 
sometimes thousands of rupees were paid for a superior sample 
of the art. When the Moguls ruled India, berth Hindoos and 
Mohammedans took great pains to acquire an elegant Persian style 
and some even went so far as to learn the Chagattai Turkish. 
Those who sought to be reckoned learned, went to the centres of 
Arabic learning and spent years in the acquisition of the theology, 
grammar, logic, physics and metaphysics of your school. 

Now, however, a complete change has come over the spirit of 
the dream. The art of the rhymster or the caligraphist has ceased 
to be remunerative. The Physics of Aristotle and Avicenna is 
antiquated, the Al-Magest of Tusi is useless, the Algebra of 
Khyatn has lost its value, the Chemistry of Jabir is mere jug- 
glery^ the Metaphysics of Averroes has ceased to be studied and 
the Platonism of Farabi is of little account. If any scholar harks 
back to these studies, he does so oiit of mere learned curiosity or 
with reference to the study of the evolution of human thought. 

The truth of the matter is, that we have been asleep for 
centuries while time has been making unceasing progress ; we 
have been stationary, while the earth has been moving beneath out 
feet. The seed of decay and degeneration was sown the day we 
made up our minds to rest, as it were, on our oars ; and content 
with our achievements in the past, ceased to thirst for fresh 
knowledge or engage in fresh research. Then truly was all lost ; 
the energy, courage, pride and ambition of the race began to 
decline, and with these went power and wealth. It is a grievous 
mistake to suppose that the Mohammedans lost the rest when 
they lost their power. The lesson from history is quite the other 
way, and teaches us that we lost our power because we had been 
losing all that preserves and perpetuates power ages before. 

It seems, however, that rather late in the day, the Mahomed- 
ans have commenced to realise what is wrong with them, and 
the meeting here to-day may be accepted as a living sign or 
symbol of this awakening. 

They have begun to see that it is perhaps a good thing for 
them not only to revive their own old learning, but even to share 
in the progress which other countries have been making during 
their long slumber. I know there are to be found among us 
antiquated individuals who still hold thafe the old learning was 
final and cannot be improved upon, bulb I am happy to think that 
such ignorance is not general. The sharp qige of living, palpable 

facts, have effectually driven such absurdities from men's minds, 
and demonstrated to them beyond cavil the might and power of 
Western civilization and Western learning, so that they are quite 
prepared to admit their superiority and profit by them as far as 
they can. 

Gentlemen, believe me, it was fortunate for us that when we 
had lost all the virtues that belong to a sovereign people, and 
power thereupon slipped out of our grasp, chance did not hand 
us over to the tender mercy of Afghan or Mgtrhatta, or subject 
us to some ofrher barbarous or autocratic people, but placed our 
destinies in the Jiands of a nation distinguished for their love of 
fairness and freedom, and advanced beyond all other nations of 
the earth in civilization and in the art of civil government. Our 
new rulers at once proceeded to establish peace and security in 
the land to which it had long been a stranger ; protected the weak 
against the strong ; devised laws to the best of human ability 
for the sake of securing each man in his rights ; opened the high- 
ways of commerce for us and brought us into close contact with 
the rest of the civilised world ; granted us freedom of con- 
science, laying no tax on worship and interfering neither with 
free thought nor with conformity, stepping in between man 
and man only to prevent wrongdoing ; opened wtde for us the 
doors of a learning before which Aristotle, Plato, AviSSnna, 
Averroes, Rhazes and Al-Ifezen are mere school boys ; and 
after centuries taught us anew the profound lesson that human 
knowledge and human thought are not immovable like stock or 
stone, but that human progress is limited only by our own 
obstinacy and fanaticism, our own lethargy and love of ease. 

If in spite of these benefits some of us are still discontented 
with things as they are, and give vent to our discontent when and 
where we can in newspapers or in public speeches, the reason is 
not far to seek. Were there not such perfect peace in the land ; 
were the strong arm still able to lord it over the weak ; were our 
Rajas and Zemindars still permitted to cut each other's throats, 
and keep their followers perpetually at the old game of robbery 
and mutual slaughter, the voice of discontent would never be 

This, however, is now out of the question. Crime cannot go 
unpunished, nor can a criminal ward off the just penalty that the 
law awards him by pleading noble rank and high birth. A Hindoo 
cannot wrong a Mohammedan, nor a Mahomedan browbeat a Hin* 
doo. A Shiah cannot injure a. Sunni nor a Sunni hurt a Shiah. 
When undisciplined man has his evil propensities thus put under 
restraint, he is not likely all at once to develop very amiable 
qualities ; his first impulse is to chafe at the restraint and 
snap at the restraining hand. This is the , whole gist of the 
matter, the head and^front of the offending ; and being granted 
freedom of speech, somfe of us naturally give vent to our 
annoyance and impatience, and take advantage of our privilege 


in season and out of season to abuse our rulers. Can any one do 
the like in the country of our neighbours the Afghans, and under 
the rule of our redoubtable ally, the Amir ? Can a Russian 
subject, even of the same race as the rulers, either indulge 
in public or even express in private any strong criticism of his 
Government ? I can quite believe that if our Government per- 
mitted the numerous Mohammedan sects, one to fetter the 
conscience of the other ; if Zamindars could withhold the 
Government due without fear of being sold out ; if a nobleman 
was permitted to borrow from a bania and th^n repudiate 
the debt at his own sweet will ; if certain clashes of men were 
given a free hand to divide the loaves and fishes of the 
service among themselves and their friends, the voices that are 
now so often raised in shrill protest would be silenced, and the 
periodical misrepresentation to which our ears are accustomed 
would be heard no more. In some Indian States, where rules 
are only made to be broken, and those in place and power are 
able to obtain immunity for themselves and their friends from 
their operations, complaints of this nature are seldom or never 
heard. But what about the dumb millions whose cry is too 
feeble to penetrate the walls of royal palaces or the mansions 
of the mighty and great ? 

Geiltlemefi', I do not hold a brief from Government. I only 
wish to state the truth, though the t^uth may taste bitter to some, 
and what I say is not for the sake of our Government which is 
well able to take care of itself without any help, such as yours or 
mine. I quite agree with those who believe in their hearts even 
if they do not choose to say it in so many words, that we would 
rather have our own rulers than be governed by an alien people. 
But I at the same time wish, as I have no doubt do all of you in 
this great assembly, that the country should prosper ; that peace 
and security should reign in it ; that the arts and sciences should 
flourish ; that personal liberty should be respected ; that cul- 
tivation should extend and population increase ; that ever re- 
newed efforts should be made to combat famine and ward off 
pestilence ; that the highways and byeways of the Empire should 
at all times remain open and secure ; that the resources of the 
country whether on or under the surface of the earth, should 
be developed ; that, in one word, we should enjoy all the benefits 
of a powerful and a highly-civilised modern State. Now I would 
like you to tell me what power, what agency within the limits of 
this great country is able to secure us all these blessings. Sup- 
posing for one moment that some contingency compelled our 
present rulers to quit the country and leave us to our fate to- 
morrow, what would be the result ? We should all be set boiling 
as in a big cualdron for some time, all the worst and most mis- 
chievous elements of our vast and heterogenous social fabric 
would be rising up to the surface, cities would be plundered, vil- 
lages burnt, and robbery and rapine \tauld rule over the land 
until some warlike tribe or some powerful sovereign invaded it, 


either for plunder or for conquest, and put all alike to the edge of 
his sword. The prosperity and progress that have accrued to us 
in the course of a hundred and fifty years by slow process of de- 
velopment would be swept away in the twinkling of an eye,and the 
peace and security, the freedom of moral and material development, 
the personal liberty that we now enjoy, would disappear for ever. 
I quite admit that in these modern days of enlightenment the 
people are entitled to criticise the acts of their Government and 
have some voice in the management of their o<m affairs, but this 
right, it seems to me, is not witheld from us. You will pardon me, 
however, for reminding you that criticism of the acts of a great 
Government by the subject races may be either friendly or un- 
friendly ; and that no wise Government can for a moment toler- 
ate hostile criticism that is ever ready to impute to it base and 
dishonest motives and pretends to hold it responsible for even 
such natural visitations as pestilence and famine. Seditious 
criticism from a subject people is like the germ of an epidemic 
that must be isolated for the good of the people themselves, and 
stamped out as speedly as possible before it has had time to spread 
and devastate the land. 

The right of friendly criticism is nowhere denied us, and it 
rests with ourselves to make a proper use of it for oiiF benellf and 
the benefit of the Government. But criticism of a complicated 
question of statecraft must be both circumspect and intelligent. 
You cannot expect sensible men to listen with patience to the 
frothy eloquence of half-educated and irresponsible schoolboys 
on measures that have been deliberated upon by expert masters 
of their craft. We must first prepare ourselves by a long and 
laborious course of training to discharge the duties of loyal 
citizens ; we must equip ourselves with fulness of knowledge and 
experience, make ourselves familiar with the conditions of the 
problems with which we wish to grapple and learn to look at them 
from the point of view of the ruling power. Then if we formulate 
opinions or venture on criticism in a loyal spirit and with a due 
sense of responsibility, we may depend upon making our voice 
heard and our representations treated with respect. We shall 
then be entitled to a share in the counsels of our country, and 
we shall find, I venture to say, that our Government will be glad 
to consult us and obtain our help a privilege, let me remind you, 
we have never enjoyed, look as far back as we like in our history- 
No Government under the sun is perfect; perfection is not 
an accident of human institutions, but a Government that car- 
ries out its functions with the deliberate advice of a large body of 
the ablest and most experienced statesmen obtainable by a 
careful process of selection, ought to be as near perfection as any 
human institution can be ; other conditions bein duly considered 
and allowed for. 

All I say is that before we venture to condemn any matter 
of policy or measure % of statesmanship determined on by a body 


BO constituted, it is our bounden duty as honest citizens first to 
realize the responsibility and give a solemn account of our ut- 
terances to ourselves. We should never let ourselves be tempted 
to express frivolous opinions on serious matters or make our- 
selves ridiculous by allowing petty, personal or class interests, or 
mere love of notoriety to usurp the solemn functions of patrio- 
tism and loyalty. 

A trite, though typical illustration of what I am attempting 
to impress upon you, occurs to me at this moment. You are 
aware that a Pasteur Institute has, after long ahd intolerable 
delay, been opened out on the Hills near Simla. ' You must also 
have noticed that several local associations in different parts of 
India thought fit at the time to protest against this attempt to 
combat that most dreadful disease hydrophobia, and that a 
. protest also travelled all the way over sea and land from the re- 
doubtable Mr. Dadabhai Naoroji, the late M. P. These v?rotests 
were all based on the plea of cruelty to animals. I do not^vish to 
prolong the discussion but will any one tell me what these protest- 
ants have done to lighten the cruel burden on draft-cattle of their 
own country and their own neighbourhood ? Mr. Dadabhai Naoroji 
has no doubt t,o play to Exeter Hall and bespeak votes for future 
parlifcsnentary contingencies, but we who see poor dumb cattle 
kept in a prolonged agony of suffering by our own countrymen, 
both Hindoos and Mohammedans day after day, do we not as- 
sume a most ridiculous position when we pretend in the name of 
tenderness to animal life, to condemn the most humane of 
modern inventions and protest against complicated scientific 
manipulations, of the very nature and conditions of which most 
of us are completely ignorant ? 

I have no doubt that there are still some old fashioned men 
amongst us who are opposed to Western learning and are not 
prepared to admit its efficacy or importance. With such men, 
however, I have nothing in common, and it is not my place to 
enter into a controversy with them. I shall take it for granted 
that the majority of those assembled in this Hall have, long ere 
this, learnt to consider it as axiomatic that there is no safety and 
no salvation for us except in frankly accepting Western teaching, 
adopting it for ourselves to the best of our ability and adapting 
it to our own special needs. I shall assume that the logic of 
hard facts has convinced you all that for success in any depart- 
ment of human activity, a high standard of education through 
the medium of English is indispensable. This being granted, 
we come to the question of how we should proceed to secure the 
best of such education. I shall be wasting your time if I opened 
again the question whether the existing Universities do or do 
not supply us Y itn all that is needful. The matter has been 
threshed out over and over again in the Conference and out of 
it, and I think we may take it that there is a general consensus 
of opinion even among those who defend the present system on 
other grounds, that it does not reach deep enough and that it 


has little influence on the formation of character or in the awaken- 
ing of the more generous impulses of youth. It is also admitted 
that even the linguistic or scientific knowledge it helps us to 
acquire, is to a great extent superficial and insufficient. It has 
produced no great man amongst us yet, nor has it stimulated 
original research in any department of knowledge. Men like 
Sir Salar Jung or Sir Syed Ahmed Khan were not indebted to 
it in any way. In fact, men of light and leading are generally 
agreed that teaching by examinations has not proved a success, 
and that it somehow seems to close up many avenues of mental 
activity whic6, but for this mechanical pressure, would open 
to us wider vistas of knowledge and culture. An important 
want in this systemp eculiarly offensive to Mohammedans is, that 
no place can be allotted in it to moral and religious education, 
and consequently Mohammedan youths educated in our existing 
schools and colleges grow up in ignorance of the essential elements 
of their religion and their sacred history. We must at the same 
time admit that, although Islam has no church and no priesthood, 
a Government like ours cannot in fairness assume any other 
attitude than that of perfect neutrality towards this aspect of 
the question. And even if the religious, difficulty were overcome 
and extensive University reforms were possible ir\ the near fu- 
ture, we should, it seems to me, be no nearer the r&alisatian of 
our dream of a truly national education, for after all we are the 
best judges of our own special needs and presumably best able to 
supply them. All we pray for is sympathy and patronage from 
Government such as has never, we must gratefully acknowledge, 
been refused to any community. 

The infant mind, moralists teach us, is a tabula rasa, except 
for the few indelible marks left on it by heredity, and other parental 
influences, the rest of the tablet is left to be written up by the 
child's own conduct in life, and the tablet has this peculiarity 
about it, that evil deeds cloud and corrode it, while good deeds 
add to its brightness and lustre. The first righteous act makes 
the next easier, just as the first act of sin paves the 
way for further sinfulness. Such is the law of moral develop- 
ment ; but intellectual and physical development, as we know, is 
governed by an analogous law, and therefore the early formation 
of proper habits is the most important part of the functions of 
a teacher. It is only when the three march together in their 
due balance, that youth develops into complete and proper 
manhood. Now it is obvious that to succeed in such a compre- 
hensive scheme of education, we must take our youths in hand in 
their tender years, place them with teachers of undoubted ability 
and high moral character, and surround them with influences 
that shall mould their character in lessons of self-knowledge, 
self-reverence and self-control, repress evil > propensities and 
, promote all the nobler ^impulses of manhood. 

Is this the kind of training that you can expect from a 


pedagogue on ten rupees, or a Babu on twenty ? Is it to be found 
in our schools and colleges ? Is it not true that our children are 
brought up under influences the very reverse of what I have 
attempted to describe ? Evil companionship, indifferent teach- 
ers, lifeless teaching ; do not these constitute the atmosphere 
that surrounds our children ; and in which we are content to let 
them grow up ? Depend upon it, if we would have all this 
reversed, if we would give our children a proper and wholesome 
education, we must set about it ourselves and take the whole 
matter into our 'hands without a moment's delay. 

I was not aware of the depths of degradation to which want 
of education has brought us, until I read of a preacher proclaim- 
ing in the sacred name of religion that the means of earning a 
livelihood now available not being lawful, we should beg the rich 
among us to feed us from their superfluity. This shameful doc- 
trine would not be worth noticing, except to show the dire effect 
on character of the evil influences of ignorance and demoralising 
environment, when a man can be found to preach that the 
followers of his sect should throw all self-respect, all shame, all 
pride of manhood aside, and glory in living on the charity of the 
wealthy and the well-to-do ! It is pleasant to contrast this with 
the noble efforts that the promoters of the Nadwa movement have 
beeirinaking towards self-help in the matter of education. Their 
aim and ours are really identical, $nd I, for one, give them my 
fullest sympathy, although I cannot approve of their methods 
and cannot help regretting that instead of uniting their efforts 
with ours they should have taken a path in which we cannot 
follow them. The whole experience of my life has taught me 
that their method, though well meant, is doomed to failure. 

In the beginning of this year the courtesy and kindness of 
my old friend and colleague, the worthy Principal of the La 
Martiniere College, Lucknow, afforded me an opportunity of going 
over the College building and seeing the institution in full swing 
of work. I was struck with the magnitude and architectural 
beauty of the huge pile, the neatness of its surroundings, its well 
wooded approaches, ample play-ground and highly cultivated 
garden. I admired its pleasant aspect with that pretty river 
Gomti flowing past, its splendid dormitories and baths, extensive 
out -houses, the beautiful chapel in the centre, above all, the 
order and regularity that seemed to reign within, and the excel- 
lent discipline which seemed to prevail among its juvenile inmates. 
And as I was going over the building and grounds that fine morn- 
ing under the kind guidance of my courteous and worthy friend, 
it struck me that anybody who owned this institution as his Alma 
Mater would have reason to remember it with pride and pleasure 
all his life. There is a similar building known by the same name 
at Calcutta, and dnother in France all three endowed and built 
by one General Claud Martin for thet benefit of youths of his - 
own race and religion. 


I have mentioned the Martiniere College to show you what 
the philanthropy of a single citizen can do for the good of his 
kind. I wish also to point out to you that the architectural 
excellence of the building, and the neatness of its grounds, and 
the picturesqueness of its environment are important elements 
in the success of an institution. They make the place and the 
business carried on there attractive, and dwell in the memory 
of those who live in them as abiding influences of an elevating 
kind. If you wish to have an institution for yourselves which 
shall mould future generations of your race, you must see that it 
has a worthy Architectural seat and noble surroundings. 

You must also take care that it is provided with teachers 
of wise culture and acknowledged ability whose personal in- 
fluence as much as the renown of their teaching shall attract 
youths of your race, and mould them into men of high character 
and noble performance. Such was the great institution founded 
by the enlightened liberality of Ptolemy, one of the successors 
of Alexander at Alexandria, where the most magnificent library 
of the ancient world, together with the princely endowment 
granted by that monarch for the encouragement of research, 
brought together all the greatest philosophers of the age and 
enabled Alexandria to eclipse Athens itself as a se'at of learning. 
All the sciences flourished there, but the University of Alexandria 
was specially noted for the advance made there in Mathematics, 
Medicine and Metaphysics. Galen was a professor there ; there 
Euclid compiled his elements ; and there also Ptolemy, the Astro- 
nomer, wrote his Al-Magest ; and the laws of Conic Sections 
were discovered and reduced to writing. The teachings of Plato 
received there a new development that led to the foundation of 
a new School of Philosophy, the influence of which may be traced 
in Mussalman speculation to this day. To be brief, this great 
seat of learning reigned supreme for nearly twelve hundred years. 
My friends " These were men and we are men, " as one of your 
great divines said of his illustrious predecessors. If we lay hold 
of our work with both hands and do it with all our might, shall 
we not succeed ? Are we the only exceptions to the general law, 
and is failure alone engraved on the tablets of our destiny ? Are 
we, of all people in the world, foredoomed to strive in vain ? I 
do not believe it. I believe in the efficacy of earnest single- 
hearted endeavour, and I believe in the efficacy of endeavour 
without reference to fruition ; for what is fruition after all but 
a gaol of rest, and rest is fatal to human progress. The human 
mind abhors quiescence when unclouded with the opiates of 
faint-heartedness and despair : only courage, capacity and man- 
hood are wanted to carry on the struggle, and provided we bring 
these with us, we never need despair. 

It is to be regretted that Aligarh does not ykt possess, except 

'to a limited extent, all thte requisites of a great seat of learning. 

Sir Syed Ahmed found no General Martin to hand him over his 


fortune for the enterprise, nor was he helped, as he ought to have 
been helped, by his own people. It is evident, however, that this 
great patriot and statesman had them all in view as any one can 
satisfy himself by going over the College and making careful note 
of what has been accomplished, as well as what, for want of funds, 
has been left untouched. He will then see a living record of his 
life-long struggle. On the one hand, he will see extensive buildings, 
crowds of eager youths in lecture-rooms and on the play -ground, 
devoted teachers, zealous friends and an admirable esprit de corps 
pervading all. On" the other hand, he will see the .beginnings of 
beautiful buildings left unfinished, walls tottering gn their founda* 
tion$, a fine mosque standing in an unsafe condition, and defi- 
ciencies in the staff which we have not the means of making good* 
We have had to part with a friend and teacher like Professor 
Arnold whom we could ill spare, and we have not the mean* 
to invite him back to our side. We want a building suited for a 
school-house where those who can afford it might find a fitting 
home for their children while at school, but funds are wanting to 
build it, and we are constrained to rent a place that is far from 

But as I have hinted before, a great deal, a very great deal 
has been accomplished. There is no other residential College 
in IncTnTfike that at Aligarh ; there is no other institution where 
scholars are so carefully looked after, or brought into such close 
contact with accomplished English teachers of culture and re- 
finement, and where their religious teaching is attended to so 
scrupulously as here. 

Although the M. A. O. College at Aligarh is a comparatively 
young institution that can hardly yet be said to have reached the 
age of adolescence, it has had to struggle through two serious 
misfortunes. The loss of its great founder and friend Sir Syed 
Ahmed Khan, and the dissensions that followed, dissensions that 
at one time threatened the very existence of the College, and 
which were hardly got over when Mr. Theodore Beck, the able 
Principal, who had been the right-hand man of Sir Syed, and his 
worthiest lieutenant and successor, was carried off after a short 
illness brought on by hard and incessant toil. This was the man 
who above all others, saved the College after Sir Syed, and took 
the entire burden of the work on himself, who out of his limited 
income spent thousands for the good of the College that he had 
seen grow under his hands and which he loved with the love of a 
parent ; and who, himself an Englishman and a Christian, literally 
gave his life in endeavouring to elevate the Mohammedans and 
help them to realise their highest aspirations. 

It was fortunate, however, for the College that at this junc- 
ture an old friend and colleague of Sir Syed Ahmed Khan's and 
a staunch well-wislier of his race, Nawab Mohsin-ul-Mulk Bahadur, 
consented to step into his place. It wUs his tact ancl judgment 
that steered the ship of our affairs through all difficulties and 


dangers, and brought it in safely to the port. But the Nawab 
Mohsin-ul-Mulk, whom I have long had the honour of calling a 
friend, will pardon me if I add, that all his tact and all his diplo- 
macy would have been useless if Mr. Morison had not with infinite 
self-sacrifice consented to withdraw his resignation and abandon 
for our sake his intention of severing his connection with the 
College. Our gratitude is therefore due in an equal degree to the 
Nawab, our Honorary Secretary, and to Mr. Morison, the accom- 
plished and indefatigable Principal of the College. 

It will not be out of place here to give a brief summary of the 
history of the College since the death of Sir Syed Ahmed Khan, 
its illustrious founder. This will enable you to form a correct 
estimate of the present state of the institution and add weight 
to the appeal I wish to make to your patriotism and generosity 
on its behalf. 

I need not recapitulate to you all the events since the College 
was founded by Sir Syed Ahmed Khan and his supporters. It 
reached its highest water-mark in the year 1895, when it had 
altogether 580 pupils on its books, of whom 850 were boarders 
and 230 day-scholars. Of these 175 belonged to the College 
and the rest to the School Department. At the time of Sir Syed's 
death in 1898, the numerical strength had dwindled doawftJto 229 
boarders and 94 day-scholars, or a total of only 232. In 1989, 
however, the numbers again r&se to 492, of whom 394 were board- 
ers and 98 day-scholars. Of these 180 were under-graduates 
and 312 belonged to the school, while the Law Classes mustered 
32 students, making a total, on the whole, of 524 on the last day 
of 1899. Although this last figure is still lower than that of 1895, 
the number of boarders is in excess of that year ; in fact, all avail- 
able house-room has been filled up and the College authorities 
are reluctantly obliged to refuse further admission. 

Financially, che College was not in a sound condition, when 
death deprived it of its revered founder. There was a debt of 
something like a lakh of rupees hanging like an incubus on the 
institution. After his death a fund was opened for the preserv- 
ation of his memory, out of the proceeds of which more than 
fifty thousand of this debt for which the demand was more or 
less urgent, was paid, leaving a balance of some seventy five 
thousand rupees still in hand. In addition to this, we have in 
hand a reserve fund of Rs, 14,000 as a guarantee for the payment 
of the staff. 

Such, gentlemen, is the present state of the College. I have 
already attempted to place before you a rough estimate of what 
I look upon as our educational needs. If you are prepared to 
accept this position, if you agree with me in that every father 
should try to arm his son at all points before lending him into 
the world, if you admit that it is a cowardice to be appalled at the 
magnitude of the task, if you admit that it is nothing short of 


fanaticism to refuse to profit by the blessings of Western learning 
and nothing short of gross imbecility not to struggle for wealth 
and competence, if you allow that it is infamy for any one to be 
content to live a life of idleness and dependence, you will also 
allow that it is your sacred duty to help us to build up the College 
and extend the sphere of its usefulness. If there is any one in 
this assembly who does not admit this, if any one has the hardi- 
hood still to maintain that our old learning and our usual lethargy 
are enough for us, let him cast a glance at the Musalman States 
of the world. Let him look at Algeria from the shores of which 
Tarik and Musa, son of Nosair, sailed to conquer Spain ; let him 
look at Tunis, once a great maritime kingdom, renowned in the 
world ; let him look at Morocco, built by a Mora vide Monarch and 
made the Capital of Northern Africa by one of the Al-Mohades. 
Algeria is a French possession and so is Tunis or nearly so. Mo- 
rocco is about to be absorbed by the same Power, though Spain 
will have something to say in the process the very Spain that its 
sons had at one time conquered and ruled. Egypt would have 
been lost to the Turks and delivered over to anarchy if our own 
rulers had not stepped in to save it. Persia is in a moribund 
condition, fanaticism having closed on her the door of progress, 
and she survives on the sufferance of European powers. She is 
little T5fe'tfeTthan our Indian States ; in fact, our Indian States 
are in a better position than Persia, inasmuch as they enjoy 
unlimited scope for improvement under the protection of a great 
civilizing Power. 

I, therefore, entreat you to bestir yourselves while there is 
yet time and do something practical and effectual for the good 
of your race. The help we need just now is in the direction of 
education. That is for us the burning question of the moment. 
We have two stages of work before us, stages by which we hope 
to raise ourselves from our present fallen condition and compete 
on equal terms with the other races of the world. The first thing 
for us to do is to place our national College on a firm footing, 
and the next is to raise it in the near future to the rank of a Uni- 
versity, where Musalman youths from all parts of India, if not 
of the Musalman world, may find a worthy Alma Mater ready 
to receive them and which may in time become a centre of Musal- 
man thought and culture. 

Here, at no distant time, perhaps, a modern Averroes or 
Avicenna may flourish to cogitate recondite problems of modern 
metaphysics ; modern schoolmen may discover new methods of 
combating scepticism and doubt ; a modern Rhazes or Avenzore 
may, with the help of modern chemistry and modern physics and 
modern biology, be found carrying on fresh researches in our 
medicine and formulating new methods of combating disease ; a 
modern Ibn Musa may be inventing new machines ; or a modern 
Tusi niay be discovering new planets,* or showing us new moons 
never seen before, and defining their orbits. Do you think these are 


visions and day dreams ? If you do, let me direct your atten- 
tion for a moment to the Kingdom of Japan. You have seen 
what has been the fate reserved for Algeria, Tunis, Morocco and 
Persia, as a penalty for refusing to accept facts, or to believe in 
human progress. Look now at what Japan has done for herself 
by following a contrary course. As long as Japan hugged her old 
conservatism and despised all foreigners and things foreign, she 
was an obscure kingdom outside the comity of nations. But 
Japan was wise enough, before it was too late, to see her mistake, 
and the progress she has made in twenty years has given her a 
respectable pl^ce in the European concert. She has made 
immense strides in the arts and sciences. She has spread the 
blessings of education all over the land. She has already given 
the world two original discoverers in the field of biology whose 
names are mentioned with respect in Europe, and she is able to 
stand forth now as a civilising influence in Asia, and as one of 
the world's great Powers. 

Among materials which go towards the building up of a 
university, and with which we must proceed to provide ourselves 
without delay, two are of essential importance ; one Architec- 
tural and the other Scholastic. We must have suitable buildings, 
and we must have an extensive repertory of branches of learn- 
ing to be taught and adequate means of teaching theni.^HSrtherto 
Mathematics and Philosophy have been the only two groups 
taken up by Aligarh, which even for a college are, in my humble 
opinion, inadequate, much more so for a university. We must 
have several Faculties and we must provide proper teachers for 
each Faculty. We must next provide a body of tutors to take 
charge, as it were, of the home education of our under-graduates, 
one for each branch of learning. We shall also want a good and 
up-to-date supply of the material vehicles of instruction, 
scientific instruments and apparatus, a well-founded laboratory and 
a well-stocked library. It is quite possible that for a long time 
to come we shall have no other college affiliated to the University ; 
but this need not give us much concern. If the University 
performs its functions as it should perform them, other 
colleges, you may be sure, will spring up by its side and will only 
be too eager to share in its teaching. It is, moreover, nothing 
new to see a university founded on a single college. The Dublin 
University is an instance in point, and also the two distinguished 
Universities of Harvard and Yale in the United States of America. 
The fact is, that when a college like ours reaches a certain point 
in its upward development, it inevitably assumes all the charac- 
teristics of a university. The matter is entirely in your hands. 
If you will help us with the means of improving the College, 
and satisfy the world that you are able to maintain it at a high 
level of efficiency in discipline and teaching, I am sure your 
Government will not refuse you a charter. l*he cost will be 
great, but nbt so grea? that you cannot easily meet it, if you will 
only put your shoulders to the wheel. 


Some of our European friends who are in sympathy with the 
movement and do not look upon our aspirations with disfavour, 
are yet doubtful of the wisdom of founding a sectarian univer- 
sity. They argue that a sectarian university that admitted 
none but Mussalmans to its precincts would tend to perpetuate 
old-world prejudices and develop narrowness of view. 

To a certain extent I admit the justness of their criticism* 
That the founder of the College was animated by similar ideas 
is evidenced by the fact that he left its doors open to Hindus 
as well as Mohammedans. I have myself been brought up in a 
school, of which wide toleration and a courteous Attitude towards 
other religions were the first principles. I have always held 
that all the different nationalities of India being sons of the same 
soil and subjects of the same Government, should live together 
in harmony and peace like brethren. I can therefore see no 
insuperable difficulty in leaving the doors of our Univer- 
sity open to all comers. I am even of opinion that it will in some 
respects be advantageous to our own youths to work side by 
side with their Hindoo brethren, and have always before them the 
example of their undeniable industry and power of application. 
There is this to be said, however, on the other side of the question 
that thfe.iplu>le gist of our scheme hinges on residence, in which our 
Hindoo brethren cannot unfortunately follow us, and experience 
has taught us that non-resident students are at all times a dis- 
turbing element in the tone and discipline of residential schools. 
Barring this one drawback, I see no valid reason why the Uni- 
versity should be exclusive ; and should this be found to be the 
only barrier to our success, I have no doubt the leaders of the 
movement will concede the point and agree to throw the doors 
of the University open to all. As for the religious side of the 
teaching and discipline which we look upon as indispensable, 
followers of other creeds will naturally keep out of it. It will 
constitute a Faculty by itself thoroughly well equipped and for 
our exclusive benefit, without which the University will have no 
influence on Musalmans and no attraction for them. 

In short, and in plain language, we want a University of our 
own, and we hope to make it subservient to two great national 
purposes. In the first place, we want the University to bring up 
our youths in the healthy, moral and religious traditions of the 
earlier era of our race, at the same time that it gives them an 
efficient training in Western learning. We want it, in the second 
place, to build up for us a centre of thought and of recognised 
teaching that will influence the vast Mussalman population of 
India in the right direction, elevate their ideals, reform their 
morals and manners, and, above all, purge and purify their litera- 
ture. Are you t aware what influence the Aligarh Movement 
has already had on Mussalman thought and Hindustani 
literature ? Were all the books written in tha(t language 
within the last quarter of a century examined, it would be found 


that those that are worth anything, wete inspired by the teach* 
ings of that school. Of the rest, including numerous works of 
fiction, many are worthless and without substance, others are 
steeped in the coarse and pernicious taste which has been left us 
as an unclean legacy by the most corrupt of Mahomedan Courts. 
Examine these productions beginning with Fisana-i-Ajaib, 
which started the tradition, down to the most flashy novel 
of our own day, and keep in view the one test of their attitude 
towards women, and you will find that they gradually recede 
from the vulgarity and filth of that hideous 'travesty of the 
raconteur's art* only to fall into the sink of the equally vulgar 
and corrupt taste of the lowest and coarsest of European novels, 
the very names of which are unknown to men of even ordinary 
culture and decency. The University to which we wish to 
give shape, will, it is hoped, be a centre of art and culture that 
will make such outrages on good taste impossible for the future 

The point on which we insist above all others is, that the 
future generations of Mussalmans shall grow up in freedom from 
the evil influences with which their environment at present sur- 
rounds them. There is hardly a place in India where children 
are not brought up in close and constant association with servants 
and slave girls, and with the moral and material sqiialor of their 
home surroundings. You cannot imagine for a moTfiBHt that 
these exercise no influence OTJL a child's character, that they do 
not sow the seeds of an impure life, or have no effect on his moral 
and material well-being. Parents are no doubt responsible for 
the up-bringing of their children under sanction of laws both 
human and divine, but how many Indian parents are there who 
realise the responsibility ? The only responsibility which they 
recognize in practice is that of spending as much money as they 
can on ceremonies in which their children are supposed to play 
the principal part. And even the few who realise their respon- 
sibility and would discharge it honestly if they could, are either 
too ignorant to know how to set about it, or too busy in their 
own affairs to take the trouble. To speak plainly, if you wish 
to bring up your children in a proper way, you should, without 
hesitation and without a moment's delay, send them to some 
such school as that of Aligarh and keep them there. Do not 
grudge the cost, it will be repaid to you a hundred-fold. Nay, 
I say to those who can afford it to the wealthy and the well-to- 
do that if you wish to be charitable, if you wish to do a good 
deed while there is yet time, found scholarships for the poor of 
your race, and send as many of them as you can to Aligarh, and 
you will surely find your reward. 

Gentlemen, there is no body of men more worthy of respect 
than our Ulima. They keep alive for us the flame of our faith 
and perpetuate for us our religious traditions. iBut, Gentlemen, 
every one isT not born 'to J?e a religious teacher. Even the faith 
itself, as you should know, would decay and vanish, but for the 



help of material competence and wealth. While acknowledg- 
ing the obligation laid on every Mohammedan to be familiar with 
the tenets and teachings of his religion, we can well entrust its 
higher custody to our Ulima and depend on their preserving our 
sacred traditions for us. We who have to fight the battle of 
the world cannot do both. Depend upon it, Islam will never 
let itself die out ; there will always be a body of Ulima to keep it 
alive. If Islam has anything to fear, it has to fear the inanity 
of its followers and the results of their indifference to the needs 
of the times. They are apt to forget that for the majority of 
us the world is and will always continue to be oijr'proper battle- 
field and our legitimate sphere of activity. Even if we wanted 
to leave the world, the world would not leave us. It would 
therefore be the height of folly not to make the most of our op- 
portunities while we are in it, and take hold of our lives with 
both hands and work up to the best of our ability. 

Gentlemen, I am sorry to have to bring to your notice a new 
epidemic that has lately broken out in our midst. I give it the 
name of Ancestor-worship. Many of our young men have fallen 
victims to it, the students of Alijjarh College being in a special 
manner exposed to its virulence. Its germs were first imported 
into this country by three or four English and American histo- 
rians aB/i*antiquarians, but some of our own leading men have 
since then, I am sorry to say, been most instrumental in spread- 
ing the contagion. I am afraid to mention names, but relying 
on your protection, I do not hesitate to say that the worst offender 
is your own Honorary Secretary, Nawab Mohsin-ul-Mulk. Mou- 
lana Shibli comes next, and although my old and valued friend 
Moulvie Nazir Ahmed is not free from the taint, he is in the habit 
of administering the bitter pills of uncompromising truth so 
frequently, that they operate as antidotes on the patients. These 
gentlemen have created a veritable furore among the Mohamme- 
dans. One recounts the greatness of Arab culture in Spain, 
another transports us to the glories of Harun-ul-Rashid and 
Baghdad. We are reminded now of the great Universities of 
Cairo, Baghdad and Samarkand ; and again of the great age of 
translation and of original production in our literature. Gentle- 
men, Ancestor-worship is not an irrational or unamiable cult, 
provided it is confined within reasonable limits. It is rirf*t 
that we should take a pride in the greatness of our ancest<|h 
and their achievements, but we should show our appreciation 
of the past by treading in the foot-steps of its heroes, and dis- 
playing in our own lives the love of learning, and the persistence 
in the search for truth for which they were distinguished. It 
is foolish and unmanly to live on their reputation like an Indian 
widow, and vain of a greatness of which we have heard the story 
from others, despise the value of modern learning and decline 
to accept its teachings. He has grievously misunderstood the 
lessons of history, who claims that the men of those days were 
perfect in every way, that we alone are full of faults. The germ 


of the shortcomings we deplore in ourselves, existed in the day 
of which we are accustomed to vaunt, and was laying for us the 
foundations of our present evU plight. Self-knowledge is the 
first step towards self-reform As long as? we do not take a frank 
account of our own faults and shortcomings, we cannot hope to 
remedy them. It is no doubt a painful process, like the actual 
cautery which, according to the well-known Arab proverb, is, 
nevertheless, the best of all remedies in the last resort. Never 
give ear to those who flatter you, they are your worst enemies. 
They alone are your true friends who point out to you your faults 
with an unsparing hand. 

Gentlemen, you who have come here as delegates from dif- 
ferent parts of India, your functions are high, and you hold an 
important position with regard to your co-religionists. It is in 
your power to carry out any measure of reform on which you 
may determine, provided you will bring to bear on it your united 
efforts. I therefore hope you will not let the present opportu- 
nity go by without taking advantage of it to initiate something 
practical in furtherance of the object for which we have met. 
If you let the present session of the Conference pass, as so many 
other sessions have passed, without taking some step in advance, 
such an opportunity will not occur again for ailother twelve 
months, long twelve months that will be lost in m&Wi&n. It 
is not for me to guide or direct your course, but I venture to point 
out that efforts should first of all be made by each delegate with- 
in his sphere of influence to collect funds, but as individual 
efforts, however well directed, are apt to get slack after a time, 
it seems to me that we should here and now settle on a plan of 
concerted action under some form of central control. You will 
pardon me if I remind you that the meetings of the Conference 
have hitherto been used more for platform oratory than for prac- 
tical work. Some very useful resolutions, it is true, 
were passed in the course of its meetings, but they remain impri- 
soned within the four corners of reports and have never been 
properly carried out. 

Thus, a resolution was passed at a meeting of the Conference 
to the effect that " Local Committees should be organised at 
different centres to report on the condition of Mohammedan Edu- 
cation and Mohammedan Schools." Some work was done in this 
direction for a short time, but after the fourth session of the 
Conference it entirely ceased. Another useful resolution decided 
on collecting statistics as to the number of Mohammedan children 
not under instruction, and finding out how many of them 
were children of parents who could afford to send them to school 
but did not, and how many were really poor. The late Mr. Beck 
took great interest in this inqury and for some time it was pro- 
secuted with vigour. Had the work been completed as it ought 
to have been, you woilld tyave been able to see for yourselves in 
what a shameful state of neglect Mohammedan parents are content 


to leave their children. I can tell you as the result of my own 
experience that the talk we so often hear of the want of religious 
teaching in Government schools, is little more than mere talk. 
Mohammedan parents are generally as indifferent to the religious 
as they are to the secular education of their children. This is 
seen in schools where religious education has been made compul- 
sory as in the Deccan. The parents give little or no help, every- 
thing is left to be done by the teachers who find it extremely 
difficult to enforce religious discipline or instruction. Speaking 
generally, and wfth reference to education in general, whether 
secular or religious, Mohammedan youths are seldom indebted to 
their parents for any distinction they may attain. 

Another very valuable resolution had reference to the collec- 
tion of funds for the support of poor students. Efforts were 
made in this direction in 1898-99, and signatures were obtained 
for some eight thousand rupees, but only Rs. 3,922 were actually 
paid for Aligarh and Rs. 580 for the Himayat-ul-Islam School 
at Lahore. Nothing, however, was done after the first success ; 
had the call been pressed I have faith enough left in my own 
people to believe that considerable additions would have been 
made to the amount subscribed. 

most important resolution of all was the one carried 
after Sir Syed Ahmed Khan's death, wherein it was resolved to 
raise the Aligarh College to the status of a university, and collect 
ten lacs of rupees by subscription for this purpose. This pro- 
posal evoked a considerable amount of enthusiasm at the outset, 
valuable literary contributions were elicited on the character 
and scope of the University, deputations were sent to different 
places to ask for contributions, but in the end only Rs. 1,25,000 
was collected. The year that is now drawing to a close brought 
no addition to the fund except one large sum of Rs. 25>000 
generously contributed by His Highnesss the Nawab of Rampur. 
A lac of rupees out of this amount has gone or will go towards 
the debts contracted by the College. In the meantime the 
enthusiasm that was evoked at the outset regarding this scheme 
is cooling down, and unless renewed and strenuous efforts are 
made in this direction, and persisted in systematically and by 
means of some suitable machinery organised for the purpose, 
the pleasant dream that crossed the vision of Sir Syed for a 
moment will never be realised. Should you, gentlemen, agree 
with me in thinking that the scheme is worth carrying out, and 
that therein lies the only hope of regeneration for our race, you 
should not leave this Hall before you have come to some 
conclusion as to the method that ought to be pursued for the pur- 
pose of securing contributions from different parts of the country. 
Were I asked to make a suggestion I would advise you first of 
all to appoint a p&id official to take charge of the Head Office of 
your Standing Committee at Aligarh, w f hos duty it Should be to 
correspond with different centres, with their local Committees, 


or local leaders of the movement, and see that the resolu- 
tions of the Conference are carried out. But as mere corres- 
pondence, or the distribution of manifestos or other literary 
vehicles of advertisement will not be enough, I would suggest the 
appointment of two or three travelling agents who should proceed 
from centre to centre, call meetings, popularise the educational 
views of the Conference, win over opponents, and stimulate 
the zeal of the lukewarm. Men should be selected for this work 
who combine some oratorical powers with a pleasant address 
and missionary zeal. To meet this extraordinary expenditure t 
I would sugges^ the opening of a separate fund to which contri- 
butions might be invited from those interested in the movement. 
A sum, say, of Rs. 2,500 would be sufficient, I think, for the first 
year. We shall then be in a position at the end of the year to 
judge what amount of success is likely to attend the measure 
and take further action accordingly. If suitable agents are 
selected, and their work watched with care and vigilance, I am 
sanguine of success. I am fully persuaded that the discourage- 
ment we are accustomed to feel at the apparent indifference of 
Mohammedans to their national interests is much exaggerated, 
and that when their patriotism or pride is appealed to in the 
right way, they are not behind other nationaltics in responding 
to the call. Only the appeal must be made in a suitable way 
and at the proper time. It will never do merely to mark out a few 
men, and lay their purses under contribution every time we want 
to raise funds for some purpose. If we really wish to do some- 
thing for ourselves, it is high time we gave up talking, or wasting 
our time in vain regrets for the past and were up and doing. 
These grand meetings and the fine speeches with which we edify 
them, will otherwise have no practical result and will all vanish 
in thin air. 

Gentlemen, I must ask you to pardon me for having tres- 
passed so long on your time and attention. I have to thank 
you for listening so patiently to what I had to say, and I now beg 
you to call upon members who have charge of the resolutions 
to be put before you, to come forward and begin the work of the 
session. But, before I sit down, it is both my duty and pleasure 
to thank the good people of Rampur, especially His Highness 
the Nawab, for having invited us here and treated us with such 
princely hospitality. His Highness is one of the principal bene- 
factors of the Aligarh College, and has very recently shown his 
enlightened liberality by contributing largely to our funds. Nor 
must I forget His Highness' staff and the members of the re- 
ception Committee, whose courtesy and thoughtfulness have 
contributed so much to the comfort of the delegates. 

Nor must I lose this opportunity of reminding you of the other 
patrons and supporters of the Aligarh College, ctyef among whom 
pnust be named the wgust name of His Highness the Nizam, 
without whose munificent liberality the College could never 


have come into existence. 

It is also my duty, before I sit down, to recall to you the 
blessings we enjoy under British rule, without which the very 
idea of such an organisation as the Mohammedan Educational 
Conference would be inconceivable. We have the happiness 
of living under a Government ever ready to look into our 
wants and help us in all our legitimate aspirations ; a Govern- 
ment that leaves us free to follow all lawful pursuits without 
let or hindrance. We should remember with gratitude the debt 
we owe to the Government of these Provinces from which the 
Aligarh College has at all times received valuably aid, especially 
under the present Lieutenant-Governor, who came to our rescue 
at a most critical period in the history of the College and has 
shown himself ever ready to help us with sympathy and advice. 

The year that is now drawing to a close has been, gentlemen 
a year of peculiar trials for this great Empire. To the ravage 
of plague and famine were added the drain of the war in Africa 
and the troubles in China. But God has been good to us, and 
the forces of Her Majesty, our beloved Sovereign, and the ability 
and devotion of her lieutenauts have triumphed over all dif- 
ficulties, so that the year ends better than it began for all parts 
of the Empire, and is now leaving us in peace to pray for long 
life to her, and continued prosperity to her rule. 

Speech Delivered in the Imperial 
Legislative Council in 1902 


The Hon'ble* Mr. Bilgrami said The last sitting of the 
winter session of this Council, when the Budget Estimates pre- 
pared by the Financial Minister of the Government come on for 
discussion, bears a remote resemblance to the voting of supplies 
in democratic Senates with all the stormy debates and other 
amenities with which newspapers and reports have made us 
familiar. It is perhaps by reason of this far off resemblance that 
the custom has grown up for honourable members of Your Lord- 
ship's Council to take advantage of the present occasion for re- 
marks on the general policy of Government, or for a particular 
representation of grievances. 

With your Lordship's permission I will avail myself of this 
privilege in order to offer a few observations on topics affecting 
the prosperity of the country, and the cause of good Govern- 
ment in which both the rulers and the ruled are equally interested 

One of the questions that have of late been agitating men's 
minds is that of famines in India and the poverty of the people. 
It is alleged that the system on which revenue is raised from land 
under British rule, is responsible for the want of staying power 
betrayed by the cultivating classes under pressure of scarcity, 
that in point of fact famines now are money famines, not grain 
famines, and that the sin of having brought about such an econo- 
mic catastrophe lies at the door of Government. The ability 
and moderation with which these views have been advocated, 
have elicited from Your Lordship one of the most remarkable 
state papers of our day, based upon information furnished by 
expert administrators in all parts of India, whose sympathy with 
the people is unimpeachable. It has been shown that the con- 
dition of the cultivating classes is not so bad as has been re- 
presented, that it has all along been receiving anxious attention 
from the departments concerned, and that still closer attention 
will, in future, be paid to the problems raised in this controversy. 

If, however, one, who does not pretend to expert knowledge 
and can only speak from casual observation, may be permitted 
to speak on a matter that is engaging the attention of the ablest 
men in the country, I, would crave Your Lordsttip's indulgence 
for making a* few very "brief observations. 

1. In the first place then I wish to state that I have not 


seen any sign of the grinding poverty that is said to exist. 
Agricultural labourers in many parts of India no doubt live on 
inferior varieties of grain such as madwa, ragi, jowari, etc., but 
this has been their staple food from time immemorial. The better 
classes of produce such as rice, wheat, etc., they are accustomed 
to convert into cash. On the other hand, observation leads one 
to conclude that the level of domestic comfort has risen within 
the last fifty years among peasant proprietors and cultivators. 
They are better clothed and live in better built cottages and are 
altogether in better plight than their fathers. It has been ob- 
served that they resort oftener to law-courts and spend more on 
their weddings and other ceremonies. 

2. But granting the poverty of the kind complained of does 
exist in some parts of India, the causes that have brought it 
about should, it seems to me, be sought elsewhere than in the 
weight of assessments. The increase of population in some 
provinces, and the total absence of other industries has a constant 
tendency to increase the number of mouths to be fed on agricul- 
tural labour, and hence it comes to pass that wages do not keep 
pace with the rise in prices, and the earning of the labourer tends 
to gravitate to a figure that will just keep body and soul together. 
If the natural resources of the country were better developed, if 
more capital were sunk in indigenous industries, an increasing 
proportion of the surplus population would be tempted off purely 
agricultural pursuits and the pressure on land would thus be 
relieved. Such industries as are to be found in the country are 
mostly in the hands of foreigners and although they employ 
native labourers, their proportion is not a hundredth part of 
what it would be, if native capitalists came forward to open 
new industries for their own benefit and the benefit of the country. 

3. There can be no doubt that there is more money in the 
country now than there was, say, in the year 1800. This is proved 
first by the enormous rise in the price of commodities, secondly 
by the steady increase in imports, and thirdly by the net imports 
of the precious metals. I do not propose to have much to do 
with figures, but I cannot resist the temptation of quoting the 
value in rupees of the imports for three years, each a quarter of 
a century apart. The imports in merchandise in 1850-51 amounted 
to Rs. 11,55,87,890 ; in the year 1875-76 they had risen to 
Rs. 38,89,16,552 and in 1900-1901 they had amounted up to 
Rs. 80,89,45,896. The gross import of precious metals in 1850-51 
amounted to Rs. 1,15,53,100 in gold and Rs. 2,65,64,980 in silver. 
In 1875-76 the imports rose to Rs. 1,83,63,811 in gold and 
Rs. 3,46,48,413 silver. In 1900-1901 the amounts imported rose 
to Rs. 11,89,89,197 gold and Rs. 12,67,87,421 silver. The net 
imports for both metals amounted to Rs. 3,27,05,190, 
Rs. 3,10,04,801 Sand Rs. 13,48,91,692 for the three years respect- 
tively. This seems to me to be an evidence, not of increasing 
poverty, but of increasing wealth. 


4. Famine in any locality in the old days meant a total dis- 
appearance of food as shown by the extraordinary height to 
which prices rose. It affected, moreover, a population less dense 
among whom proprietary cultivators very considerably out- 
numbered those who were merely field labourers dependent on 
daily wages. Now in times of famine the rise in prices is nothing 
like so high, and it may therefore be concluded that the catas- 
trophe is not so acute or so crushing. But this advantage is 
counterbalanced by the fact that land has no\r more mouths to 
feed of a class.utterly unable to offer much resistance, day-labour- 
ers in fields ami villages notoriously improvident by nature and 
by habit, and living from hand to mouth. Some idea may be 
formed of their numerical strength from the following figures. 
Out of a population (omitting thousands) of 212 million souls, 
there are 31 million field and casual labourers, and 53 million 
landowners and cultivators in the British Provinces. 

5. The experience of famine -relief officials points to the con- 
clusion that since the early sixties peasant proprietors are seldom 
to be seen on relief works in times of famine. With the one 
exception of the last great famine, which was preceded in most of 
the affected areas by a cycle of bad years, and whjch involved a 
wholesale destruction of cattle from want of fodder and drink- 
ing water and the complete loss of crops, by reason of which cul- 
tivators in large numbers wre obliged to resort to these works, 
day-labourers and artisans alone avail themselves of such means 
of relief. May not one conclude that economic conditions have 
improved since 1860, and that if the great famine of 1899-1900 
had not been so absolute and widespread, involving, as it did, an 
area equa) to nearly one half of the whole of India, and if both 
cattle and crops had not been so utterly destroyed, peasant pro- 
prietors and cultivators would still have kept away as before 
from relief works ? 

6. There is no reason to believe that famines are more fre- 
quent now than in former days. Thirty or forty years ago every 
well-to-do native household harboured one or more so-called 
slaves obtained sometimes in return for a small measure of corn 
from their parents in famine times. Parents still resort to this 
mode of saving their own lives and those of their offspring, but 
their number is nothing so large as it used to be. In pre-British 
times there was practically no India, there were a great many 
subahs and principalities but no consolidated Empire, and calami- 
ties that befell one subah scarcely ever affected other subahs and 
were seldom heard of, certainly never recorded in Blue Books or 
other annals. Now-a-days a famine in any part of India, however 
remote, is not only known and recorded at once, but is predicted 
with greater or less precision long before it has made itself ac- 
tually felt.. Season^ Deports keep the public au courant with crop 
prospects indicating different degrees of shortness by means of 
a Aiding scale of proportionate figures. There was no census in 



the old days and no one knew, except by a round guess, if any one 
took the trouble to guess, how many were swept away by famine 
or other scourges. Now the number of deaths is estimated and 
recorded with as near an approach to accuracy as possible and all 
the world is soon placed in possession of the figures. 

7. In well-watered regions famine is seldom heard of, as 
witness Lower Bengal. In the Rohilkhand Doab in the North- 
West there has been no famine, to speak of since 1837-8. In 
the region irrigated by the Krishna and Godavery canals in the 
Madras Presidency famines are rare and the people are pros- 
perous. I think we are entitled to infer from this that the less 
a Province depends on the monsoons for its crops, the rarer are 
the visitations of famine in that Province. 

8. The increase of litigation in Behar, Oudh and other Pro- 
vinces I take to be a sign of growing prosperity. The great in- 
crease of pleaders, mukhtars and the smaller fry who in one way 
or another live and thrive on work connected with litigation in 
district towns, in tahsils and in munsiff's courts, affords indubit- 
able proof of the growing prosperity of peasant proprietors and 

9. An impartial observer is bound to admit that if our peas- 
antry were less reckless in borrowing money far beyond their 
means, to spend on ceremonies, if they were less prone to ease 
oft labour when sufficient has been earned wherewith to pay 
rent and have in hand, something over to live on during the year, 
we should hear very little of distress and poverty in ordinary 
times of scarcity. It is also to be remembered that famine in an 
isolated Province is now often a godsend to neighbouring Provinces 
where crop returns have been normal. This adds considerably 
to the recuperative power of our peasantry. Agriculturists have 
been known to recoup their previous losses three or four times 
over in a single prosperous season from a sudden rise in prices. 

10* Whether the State or the peasantry are entitled to th e 
whole or part of the unearned increment, is a question not to b e 
determined by the theoretical economist but by the actual ad" 
ministrator according to the needs of the administration. Pre" 
paredness for the defence of the country from all possible ex" 
ternal or internal foes, the development of its resources, the cons" 
truction of roads, railways, and canals, the diffusion of know- 
ledge among the people, in fact all progressive advancement from 
good to better, and from better to better still must depend, in 
an entirely agricultural country like India, on the continued and 
progressive enhancement of the surplus left over after allotting 
the cultivator his fair share of the net value of his outturn over 
and above the cost of cultivation and other such almost con- 
stant items of expenditure. If this surplus becomes stationary 
or grows less from year to year instead of increasing, then we may 
take it the State is in a decline and that it is time for the states-' 
man at the helm of affairs to look about him, for there are surely 


rocks ahead. If, on the other hand, the surplus increases from 
year to year, we are entitled to infer that the country is pros- 
perous and that the State has the means at its disposal of continu- 
ing on a path of progress all along the line. 

11. This surplus from settlement to settlement amounts to 
as much as four or five times the original amount in some of the. 
Indian Provinces where a thirty years' settlement is in vogue. 
This I take to be a sign of growing prosperity not of impoverish- 
ment, and if the cultivator was provident enough to save the pro 
gressive increment within the term of the settlement, he would 
for years to coitie be ensured against any famine short of such a 
famine as that of 1899-1900. 

12. The allegation that light assessments are preventive of 
famine is, I submit, fallacious. Take for instance the assigned 
districts of Berar. This is notoriously the most favoured pro- 
vince in all India. Nowhere else are assessments so light or the 
cultivators more prosperous. According to the Famine Report 
for 1899-1900 there had been no drought in the Province and no 
failure of crops until the partial failure of 1896-97 and the total 
failure of the monsoon in 1899. This reduced the outturn to 
2 5 per cent, of the average of the previous ten years, with the 
result that nearly 20 per cent, of the population ftent on relief- 
works although the price of grain was never very high, and there 
was plenty of it in the country. Yet the census of 1901 returned 
a decrease of 144,000 souls in the population ! In the famine 
of 1869 in Ajmere, on the other hand, people were found dead of 
starvation who had money in their pockets. 

13. It ought to be possible to make an organised effort in 
rural districts to persuade the cultivating classes to adopt more 
moderate expenditure of money at birth, marriage, affiance and 
and other ceremonies. If such efforts have been successful 
among a proud people of immemorial traditions like the Rajputs 
of Central India, there is reason to hope that earnest efforts in 
this direction by some of our able and disinterested patriots, who 
wish to serve their country, would bear good fruit. A few men 
of light and leading, working on this noble mission among the 
people, would not only be able to help in arresting the advance of 
agrarian ruin, but would by personal observation throw invalu- 
able light on the economic condition of the country and the truth 
or otherwise of the alleged growing poverty of the people. 

14. It is sometimes urged that the action of Governmant has 
led to' the gradual disappearance of village communities, and that 
when these institutions existed, the peasantry belonging to them 
were better able to withstand the pressure of famine than now. 
This again is a question which can only be solved by expert ad- 
ministrators on the evidence of settlement officers who have 
dealt direcjtly with tjie cultivating classes, and'have had opportu- 
nities of studying phenomena with which outsiders can have but a 
superficial acquaintance. The common sense view, however, of the 


matter seems to me to be that it is the general, moral and material 
progress of the country the establishment of peace, the security 
of the highways and by-ways of trade and intercommunication, 
and the rise of individualism, that is really responsible for the 
disintegration of the old village communities the importance of 
which, I am not sure, we are not apt to exaggerate. The growth 
of personal freedom and individualism is indeed answerable for 
much more than this, if the truth must be told. It is slowly 
dissolving the time-honoured caste system of India and the sys- 
tem of rigid guilHs among artisans and craftsmen which is so 
closely allied to it. Whether these changes ingKe for progress 
or the reverse is a question which, in the phase of transition 
through which we are passing, needs a great amount of assurance 
to answer one way or the other. It seems to me, however, that 
the causes at work are beyond human control unless it is con- 
tended that a reactionary return to an already remote past could 
be achieved by a simple compact between the rulers and the 
ruled. It is sometimes suggested that village punchaits should 
be revived along with village communities. But intelligent coun- 
try people whom I have had occasion to consult, discourage the 
idea. They contend that the institution does not any more 
carry the sanction of village public opinion and has lost the saving 
quality of finality. A great native statesman, whose views did 
not favour the judicial system of British Provinces, once initiated 
an extensive and elaborate experiment in this direction, not in 
villages, but at the capita] of the state. He tried to get petty 
litigation disposed of by simple punchaits in each mahalla of the 
town. The experiment however, proved a failure. 

15. It must be borne in mind, after all is said and done, that 
until the civilised world is able to solve the economic problem of 
poverty, States kept free from conditions retarding the normal 
growth of population, will always have on their hands a certain 
varying proportion of the poor and the indigent. In European 
countries where the low temperature attained in winter is an 
added evil, distress is much severer than we have any concep- 
tion of in our warmer and more generous climate. The fact of 
the existence of poverty then has to be accepted in all countries 
and all that the Government or the people can do is to endea- 
vour, year after year, to alleviate its intensity and narrow its 

Indian administration, my Lord, has given birth to two dis- 
tinct schools of thought widely divergent in their principles and 
methods which may be briefly described as the personal and 
impersonal schools. The first was more in favour in the days 
of the East India Company, but the opposite method has been 
gaining ground in these latter days. The advocates of this 
method would eliminate the personal element, altogether from the 
administration, turn it into an automatic* machine and reduce 
everything to rule of thumb. 


But it seems to me, My Lord, that for the mild, simple law- 
abiding and thoroughly loyal character of the masses in India, 
an impersonal, automatic Government, however well intentioned, 
would be the most crushing of tyrannies. The personal equa- 
tion can never be eliminated ; it is and it will continue to be the 
most powerful factor in Indian administration. The people 
will take much and cheerfully at the hands of an official who 
enters into personal relations with them and is ready to take 
an active interest in their affairs, but the best intentioned acts 
of an unapproachable automaton are received with sullen ac- 
quiescence if 'not with positive distrust. The greatest danger 
of this Empire lies in too great centralization and too much red 
tape. At least in one great Province which is best known to me, 
the complaint is becoming more and more general, I do not know 
with what truth, that the new drafts in the services show less 
and less consideration for the feelings and susceptibilities of the 
people among whom they are placed. Now, I submit, My Lord, 
that if overwork has raised this barrier between District officials 
and the people, the sooner the barrier is broken down and de- 
molished, the better it will be both for the happiness and content- 
ment of the people and the stability of the Empire. If in some 
cases it is temperament, and not overwork, that stands in the 
way, then, my Lord, the sooner such officials arc relegated to 
departments other than executive the better it will be for their 
own reputation and for the 'country. Indian administration is 
not their metier. The Indian Government cannot afford to lose 
touch with the people for the sake of men whose sympathies 
are not widely human and who only seek service here for a career. 

I believe, My Lord, that no' sacrifice will be too great to bring 
the Government into touch with the people. In my humble 
opinion that is the one point towards which all effort both of 
the rulers and the ruled should be directed. If the fetish of 
centralization is an obstacle in the way, let the fetish be de- 
throned and let us revert to the days when there was less compli- 
cation of procedure less reporting but more direct Government. 
The Viceroy represents the might and majesty of the Empire, 
but the Viceroy is not so potent as the District Officer who has 
found his way to the hearts of the people by taking an interest 
in their affairs, listening to their little grievances, and treating 
their faults and shortcomings with that good humoured toler- 
ance which is one of the characteristics of the born ruler of men. 
I believe, My Lord, that the Indian people love an autocratic 
official provided he is sympathetic and just. They even prefer 
a high-handed man if he is accessible and kind. But a weak 
man with an irritable temper, a man without power of initiative, 
or a man overridden by precedents and red tape they secretly 
laugh at and despise. Above all, they love a gentleman and 
will do anything for Jiim. Many an English administrator has 
left behind him a name wkich is a household word in our villages 
and towns, and is written indelibly on the hearts of the people. 


We want more such men if you can give them to us. It will be 
said perhaps that competition is not a respector of persons and 
does not recognise caste. Be it so. We do not quarrel with 
competition, but at any rate let the choice of those who have to 
enter into direct relation with the people, fall on selected members 
of the service who have shown a capacity to rule. 

It is usual, My Lord, in European no less than in Asiatic 
countries to mark occasions of great national rejoicing, such as 
is about to be celebrated both in England and in India, with 
manifestations in some form or other of the Roj^al prerogative 
of kindness and mercy towards the people. May not then the 
people of this great dependency of the English Crown and its 
brightest jewel, look forward to some such mark of royal favour 
when our Gracious Sovereign is crowned Emperor of India ? May 
we not hope that, as far as financial considerations will permit, 
a little of the burden of taxation that falls on the very poor will 
be lifted, and that perhaps my honourable colleague, Sir Edward 
Law, will see his way to reduce to some small but appreciable 
extent the tax on salt which reaches down even to dumb animals ? 
Perhaps also, if seasons are propitious and it is found that that 
honourable gentleman's estimates of revenue receipts in some 
directions were too cautious, it may be possible to raise the mini- 
mum of taxable income from Us. 500 to 1,000 or even 2,000 rupees. 

May we not also entertain the hope that in view of the help 
ungrudgingly rendered by us, in Africa and in China, the value 
of which has been freely acknowledged, part of the addition to 
our military burdens amounting to nearly one-and-a-half millions 
pounds or over two crores in rupees will be remitted. I refer 
mainly to the moiety of the increase due to bounties given to 
time expired men in order to fill the gaps in the garrison of this 
country caused by the African war. This item which for the 
two years 1901-1902 and 1902-1903 amounts to over sixty four 
lakhs of rupees, should, I submit, like the other moiety, be borne 
by the Home Government. The cost again of taking a contingent 
of volunteers and native troops to England for the coronation 
amounting to a little over five lakhs should, I submit be borne 
by the Imperial Treasury, seeing that we are going to expend a 
much larger amount on the same ceremony here. In fact, it is 
in the just, if not generous, adjustment of the accounts between 
the two countries that the greatest hope of the people of India 
must lie for a long time to come. Even if circumstances should 
favour us with better surpluses in the near future than are an- 
ticipated in 1902-1903, these surpluses should go towards the 
lightening of the burdens of the poor and in making provision 
against famines, rather than in contributing towards expendi- 
ture with which we cannot be held to be justly chargeable and 
which a rich country like England can well afford. 

Speech Delivered in the Imperial 
Legislative Council in 1903 


THE congratulation with which your Lordship has been greet- 
ed in the Council Chamber today, will be echoed through 
out: the country, and though the taxpayer at large may 
not understand the skill and economy that have led to the 
signal financial success revealed in the Budget Statement 
of the year, he will none the less appreciate the relief 
which your Lordship has been able to grant him from a part of his 
burden. Nor will the good deed go unrewarded, for I am persuad- 
ed that the remission of eight annas on salt will lead to an in- 
creased consumption in future years, and reduce appreciably 
the loss estimated to accrue from this source. 

But, while the relief afforded by the reduction of duty on salt, 

will take some time in reaching the consumer, the raising of the 
limit of taxable income will be hailed at once by thousands of 
petty traders, clerks and pensioners and be a pleasant remem- 
brance and happy augury to them of the year of His Majesty's 

The recuperative power of the country, and the wise measures 
taken by your Lordship's Government for its development, have 
resulted in a succession of four prosperous years, ami we may be 
permitted to hope that these four years will be followed by many 
more of increasing prosperity. If the monsoons don't fail us, 
and war is averted, we may indeed count on recurring surpluses 
and a condition of stability in the finances of the country to which 
she has long been a stranger. With such a prospect before us, 
it may not be out of place to consider what use might be made 
of our anticipated prosperity, and in which direction our future 
surpluses might be employed with the greatest advantage to the 

I believe, my Lord, in the efficacy of education, and I believe 
that, as times permit, we should ask your Lordship's Government 
for increased expenditure in this direction, and ask year after 
year until we get it. Much of the poverty, a great deal of the 
oppression of which we hear, is due to ignorance. Reforms in 
administrative departments may polish the surface, the real evil 
remains beneath, and will never be reached until the people come 


to know their rights, and are able to resist the petty oppression 
of subordinates. The simplicity of the Indian ryot is easily im- 
posed upon. The most benevolent measures only reach him in 
an emasculated condition, if they are not turned into fresh en- 
gines of extortion. One of the best abused departments is the 
Police in India, but half of its evil odour would evaporate if the 
people whom the Police is supposed to protect, were not ignorant 
of the most elementary concerns of life. The administration of 
plague measures would ^ive little trouble but for the same reason. 
The remission of part of the duty on salt which your Lordship's 
Government has so graciously conceded will not, it is apprehended, 
reach the poor consumer at once, because in his ignorance he wil 
let the middle-man pocket the difference. Many an epidemic 
would be isolated and extinguished, many a serious riot would 
be prevented, but for the most childish misapprehensions bred 
of ignorance. In short, instances might be multiplied ad infin- 
itum to show how the best intentions of our rulers often miscarry 
owing to the simplicity and ignorance of those who should bene- 
fit by them. 

I venture to submit, my Lord, that funds spent in dispelling 
this ignorance, would be remunerative expenditure, remuner- 
ative, I was going to say, as funds spent on irrigation, though 
in a different way. If its direct benefits are only moral not 
material, it will indirectly and in its ultimate results, bring in 
returns convertible into rupees, annas and pies. It will promote 
order, fortify and enhance the prestige and power of the execu- 
tive, and help to reduce expenditure in various directions, and in 
time even directly increase the receipts of the State. It is not 
an exaggeration to hold that no industrial revival on which so 
much of the future prosperity of the country must necessarily 
depend, can take place until the general intelligence of the masses 
of its inhabitants has been raised to a higher level by the spread 
of education. 

Yet how has the work of educating the people been done up 
to this time ? India is spending something under a crore of 
rupees from Provincial funds, on education for the service of a 
population of 232 million souls. A comparative study, in this 
connection, of the outlay on education from public funds in the 
foremost civilized countries of the world is very instructive. 

Taking the year, 1896-97, for convenience of comparison, one 
finds that, while India was spending Rs. 95,22,009 in round 
numbers on education, both direct and indirect, England was 
spending on direct education alone no less than Rs. 12,03,54,000 ; 
France was spending Rs. 12,42,98,000 ; Russia Rs. 5,24,81,000 ; 
Germany Rs. 5,19,78,000 and the United States of America 
Rs. 11,61,86,000 j. 

It will be seen from a tabular statement which I will, with 
your Lordship's permission, take the liberty of laying on the 


table, that, taking the respective populations of the countries eon* 
cerned, the cost to the State per head of population works out 
at Rs. 8 9 for England ; Rs. 8 2 for France ; annas 6 4 for Russia ; 
Re. 1 for Germany ; Rs. 1-8 for the United States of America ; 
and pies 7*7 only for India ! 

Total expenditure on education from all sources including 
endowments, subscriptions, the large item of fees, local and muni- 
cipal funds, etc., was for the same year, Rs. 8,52,00,000 in round 
numbers, so that the net contribution of the State towards edu- 
cation was less than one third of the total cost. And yet, the 
total cost, not \juite a third of which was borne by the State, 
will not work out to more than annas 2*8 per head of population, 
so that if we wished to overtake even a backward country like 
Russia, we should still have to spend little short of three times 
the amount we are spending now from all sources, public and 

When we remember that in some of these countries vast sums 
are contributed by private munificence to the higher education 
of the people, and that State funds are mostly appropriated to 
primary education, we can form some conception of the dispa- 
rity of the position India occupies in the civilized avorld. Even 
Russia where the subject population is kept in a state bordering 
on slavery, spends nearly ten times as much as India ! 

So much for State expenditure on education. Now let us 
enquire how many children are under instruction in India compared 
with other countries. I find for the same year that, while we had 
some 87 lakhs of children under instruction in our schools (in- 
cluding aided and recognized private schools) out of a popula- 
tion of 282 millions, England had 65 lakhs out of a population 
of 81 millions, Japan 46 lakhs out of a population of 43 millions 
and Russia 45 lakhs out of a population 129 millions ! If we 
were moving at the pate of our British fellow subjects, we should 
have 480 lakhs under instruction ; if we took Japan for our 
model, we should have 248 lakhs ; but, if we were content to 
follow the lead of a backward country like Russia we should 
still have 80 lakhs in our schools ; another tabular statement 
which I take the liberty of lying on the table, will bear out my 

I think I have shown, My Lord, that His Majesty's Indian 
subjects are far behind every other civilized nation in the world 
in the matter of education. It is as much to the advantage of 
the rulers as of the ruled that this disparity should no longer be 
allowed to exist, and that the State should help us to overtake 
fellow travellers who have left us far behind them on their on- 
ward way. To argue, as some will argue, that our condition 
would be a great deal worse if our affairs were not cared for by our 
English rulers, would he neither just nor generous. We are grate- 
ful for the innumerable blessings we enjoy under British rule, 
but jwe claim the rigjit of backward find struggling people to be 


helped to work out cur salvation out of taxes paid by ourselves. 
India is a poor country : if it ever grows riehuagain, it will be with 
the help of its generous rulers. In a matter of vital importance, 
like that of education, it would be fatal to wait till we can help 
ourselves. That would be reasoning in a vicious circle. Hither- 
to when the need for economy has risen, the shears have been 
applied impartially, and education has not been spared. In 
years of financial depression this was perhaps inevitable, but now 
that prosperity has once more made its appearance and promises 
to stay with us, what better use could be made of it than to make 
a more generous grant towards education and extend its bound- 
aries forward in all directions. The people in India expect a great 
deal from your Lordship, in this and in other directions, and they 
have no doubt that they will get it before you leave her shores. 

I would have ventured to indicate another direction in which 
financial prosperity might afford relief to India, I mean the abol- 
ition of some of the duties that hamper our industries, but I 
feel persuaded that the question of the economic freedom of 
India will have to be fought on English not Indian ground, and 
when the battle is joined, we know from past experience on which 
side your Lordship's voice will be raised. 

I do not wish to trespass on your Lordship's time much longer, 
but there is one small matter to which I will, with your Lord- 
ship's permission, call attention. The history of this Council, 
I need not remind your Lordship, has been one of slow and cau- 
tious progress. There was a time when the Ordinances of the 
Governor-General issued at his own initiative, or with the consent 
of the Executive Council, had the force of law. Judges of the 
Supreme Court were sometimes invited to help in the elabora- 
tion of enactments, but there was no representation of any kind. 
The next step was taken in 1861 by the constitution of the 
Legislative Council and the appointment on it of a few non-official 
members, Indian and European, nominated by Government. In 
1892 a further advance was made, and the number of non-official 
members was increased : and in 1893 a restricted amount of 
representation was conceded which has over and over again 
sent to the Council members, both European and Indian, who 
have proved an ornament to the Legislature and a source of 
strength to its deliberations. The right of interpellation granted 
at the same time has often proved a means of clearing away mis- 
understandings and of justifying the Government to the public. 
At this point, however, the progress of popular principles has 
rested since 1892. There has been no further expansion, and con- 
sidering all interests it is difficult to indicate in which direction 
further expansion is possible in the near future. There is one 
point of procedure, however, which your Lordship might con- 
sider without making the smallest change in the constitution of 
the Council. The present practice is^to allow one day for the 
presentation of the Budget and another upmediately afterwards 


for what is called the debate. The interval between the two 
proceedings is far too short to permit of the non-official members 
offering their views and criticisms with any fulness of preparation, 
while the official members have hardly time to deal fully or ade- 
quately with any controversial matter that might have been 
brought up in the course of the debate. I therefore, venture to 
suggest for your Lordship's consideration whether it would not 
be in the best interests both of the Government and of the public 
in future to grant an extra day, and if practicable, to increase 
the interval between the budget statement and the debate. 


Statement showing amount of grants for Public Education 

in America 

(a) Sum-total of direct and indirect expenditures * 
from Provincial Revenues. Vide General 
Table IV. Cotton's Report. 

v) Current (direct) expenditure only, detailed as 
follows : 


Government annual grant for elementary 
schools .. .. 

y -\ 

..2,24,05,980 i 
ls. 1,13, 51, 725 J * 

Government fee grant for Elementary schools. 
State appropriation for Normal schools for 

elementary teachers . . . . 7,95,489 do 6 

Government annual grant to Scientific and 

Art Departments , . . . . . 39,60,229 do 84 

Vol. I 
> Comr's 

Total .. 3,85,13,878 

= Rs. 1,20,854,291. (1 dollar = 4s. 2d. or 50d. = 50 as. or Rs. 3-2-0). 

(c) Current expenditure only. Vide page 1088. Vol. I Comr's Report. 

(d) (Actual) State Finance ordinary expenditure on Public instruction. Vide page 

994, Statesman's Year Book. 

(1 Rouble =J dollar = 2s ld. = Re. 1-9-0) 

(e) Detailed as follows : 

Receipts froln State taxes for common (Pub- 
lic Elementary and Secondary) schools . . 8,61,97,388 Vide page 13 Vol. I 

Comr's Report. 

United States Government AppropriatioS for Vide page 1,600 Vol. 

Universities and Colleges . . . . 982,047 II Comr's Report . 

Total .. 8,71,79,885 

\f) Immediate expenditure from State funds on Vide page 640 Statesman'* 
Elementary education . . . . Year Book. 

(20 Mark** = l=*Rs. 15). 

[Stattmtnt . 













Comparative view of State 


Source of 

Year for 

which figures 

are taken 

State portion of expenditures 
on Education 

In Rupees 


Cotton's quin- 
quennial Report, 

ENGLAND | Report of the 
I Commissioner 
| of Education, 
United States, 
' 1898-99 Vol. I. 


i (a) 95,522,985 

1897 (b) 8,85,18,878 i 12,08,54,291 




(c) 8,97,75,615 



Year Book 1902 


(<*) 8,35,88,128 



Report of the 
of Education 
U.S. 1898-99 
Vols. I & II. 


(e) 8,71,79,885 


(for Elementary 
Education only). 

Statesman's Year 
'Book 1902 


(/) 6,98,05,000 




Expenditure on Education. 



portion of 

portion of 

the cost of 

the cost of 




per pupil 

per head of 


Rs. 2-5 |Rs. *()4or 
I 7' 7 pies 

(a) Sum-total of direct and indirect expenditures from 
Provincial lievenue. Vide General Table IV. Cot- 
ton's Report. 

Rs. 18-4 

Rs. 3-9 

Rs. 19-1 

Rs. 11-6 

Rs. 0*9 

Rs. 0-5 

(b) Current (direct) expenditure only details as follows- 

Govt. Annual grant for 22,405,930 1 

Elementary Schools . . > Vide 1 

do fee do 11,351,725 J page 4 j 

State appropriation for 

Normal Schools for El- 795,489 Vide 
ementary Teachers. 


| Vol. I: 

Government Annual 
grant to Scientific 
and Art^Department. 

3,960,229 Vide 

page 34 j 

Total . . 88,513,873 

^=Rs. 120,254,291 (1 dollar=4s. 2d. or 50d.=50 as. 
or Rs. 3-2-0). 

Rs. 3-2 

Rs. -4 or 

6-4 as. 

Rs. 1-6 

R*. 1*0 

(c) Current expenditure only. Vide page 1088, Vol. I. 
Commissioner's Report. 

(d) (Actual) State Finance ordinary expenditure on 
Public Instruction. Vide Page 994, Statesman's 
Year Book. (1 rouble = J dollar. = Rs. 1-9-0) 

(e) Detailed as follows : 

Receipts from State taxes for common Public 
Elementary and Secondary) Schools. = 86,197,883 
dollars. Vide Page 18. Vol I. ( omr's Report. 
United States Government. Appropriation for 
Universities and Colleges = 982,047 dollars. Vide 
page 1,000. Vol. II. Comr's Report. Total... 
87,179,385 dollars. 

(/) Immediate Expenditure from State funds on Ele- 
mentary Education. Vide pa&e 640, Statesman's 
Year Book, (20 marks =*l=Rs. 15) 

The Mohammedan University 

IF the Mohammedans of India were a united people, conscious of 
a community of interests and accustomed to w6rk in concert in 
all matters that concerned the common weal of the community, 
an institution like the Aligarh College, which contains the nuclei 
of all the separate elements which go towards the constitution ef 
a teaching University, might well be left to develop into one in the 
natural course of evolution. But the Mohammedans of India are 
not a united people and their conception of their best interests is 
as divergent as the localities in which they live. It is therefore 
to be feared that, if left to itself, the Aligarh College would not 
only not develop into anything higher, but would in all probabil- 
ity degenerate into an ill-taught and worse disciplined maktab 
of the old type, if it does not altogether cease to exist. It is there- 
fore necessary for Mohammedans of light and leading in all parts 
of India, who would look upon such an event as little short of a 
national calamity, to contribute towards the preservation and 
further development of the only national institution they possess 
by helping it in every way in their power. 

It has sometimes been said, and will probably be said again 
that if the Government colleges are good enough for the Hindoos, 
they ought surely to be good enough for us, and that it is a work of 
supererogation on our part to seek to establish an institution of 
our own. But I am not at all sure that we have seen the last of 
what our Hindoo brethren are prepared to do for themselves. 
They have hitherto lain under the glamour of political aspira- 
tions (kindled by the unwise procedure of their leaders) and 
have not been able to look to their more practical needs. I 
feel quite certain that, when they once perceive that the direc- 
tion which they are trying to give to their national energies leads 
to a cul de sac, they will turn their attention to social and educa- 
tional reforms, in which, I hope, they will have the sympathy, 
and, if need be, the help, of all right-minded Mohammedans. We 
may rest assured, however, that once their attention is awakened 
in this direction, they will not be hampered with the difficulties 
that well nigh broke the heart of the great man and true patriot, 
who was the leader of the movement we see in full force today, 
and who laid the foundation of the noble institution which we 
wish now to enlarge and improve. Instead therefore of citing 
their example in favour of inaction, we shotild be proud of having 
in this one instance stolen a march over our Hindoo fellow-subjects 


and made a good start on the road to an independent intellectual 
career of our own. For leaving other considerations aside, what- 
ever one does for oneself, any worthy end attained by strenuous 
exertions of our own, at the cost of generous self-sacrifice and 
with wise disregard of the pleasures of the passing day, and provi- 
dent forethought of the needs of a near or distant future, is for 
the very reason of the effort and sacrifice involved, much more 
valuable to an individual and still more so to a people, than 
eleemosynary gifts from another, even though that other be the 
Ruling Power, of the State. 

There are, however, various other considerations pointing to 
the need of a well equipped educational institution of our own. 
The Universities of Bengal, Madras and Bombay were chartered 
a little less than half a century ago on the model of the London 
University of those days, and have, in spite of the limits within 
which their sphere of usefulness was confined, done good work 
in their way. But limited as their scope was to the holding of 
certain stereotyped examinations, the schools and colleges that 
sprang up to carry out their behests, necessarily began with 
coincident limitations, and, as was only natural, crystallised into 
institutions for the manufacture of graduates. Distinctions 
that in their attainment involve no physical exertion or peril of 
life or limb, have a peculiar attraction for the weaker races, and 
they were all the more eagerly sought after, because they served 
as passports to employment and power. In a short time Univer- 
sity degrees attained a market value perhaps unexampled in the 
history of the world, the art of cramming came into existence, 
and the compilation of cribs, notes, abstracts and other mnemonic 
devices rose to the dignity of a profession. The popularity of a 
lecturer came to depend not on the width of his attainments or 
the excellence of his teaching, but on the number of candidates 
that under his training obtained passes at the various examina- 
tions prescribed by the Universities. If a scholarly teacher, and 
of these there is no lack in our colleges, ever felt tempted to leave 
the beaten track and teach a subject instead of teaching a text 
book, he soon discovered that his pupils were intent not on listen- 
ing to his exposition, but on reading cribs and note books of 
their own under the cover of their desks. The thousands who 
flocked to our High Schools and affiliated Colleges, lived where 
they could, most often in environments and exposed to influences 
little calculated to foster excellence of conduct, purity of morals 
or cleanliness of life. There was no tie between them except the 
University examinations ; to parody a common saying, it was 
a case of every one for himself and the Examiners for all. There 
was no common school life, no field for the cultivation of the 
more generous impulses of youth, no foundation for the exercise 
of discipline that goes towards the formation of character. It 
was not au uncommon experience to hear Indian gentlemen of 
the old school express their horror of the arrogance, conceit and 
want of manners betrayed by children of gentle birth after even 


a short sojourn in these institutions, accounting to a considerable 
extent for the reluctance which Mahomedans of the past genera- 
tion felt in giving their children the benefit of an English 

So patent were these evils and so obtrusive their results, that 
one of our ablest viceroys took the matter into serious considera- 
tion, and issued a circular which is only memorable now for having 
led to nothing. There was a little talk at the time about moral 
text books, as if morals and manners could be tested by com- 
petitive examinations, a futile attempt in one oi?*two instances 
to enforce discipline, and there was an end of the matter. Laud- 
able as the effort was, it failed, because the root of the evil was 
left untouched. Discipline is the foundation and more than 
half the superstructure of culture, and discipline was impossible 
under the system that had taken deep root amongst us. Things 
were so ordered that provided our youths passed their University 
Examinations, it mattered little to them what else they did or 
did not do. Degrees led to preferment and power, and it was 
degrees, therefore, that were desired at whatever sacrifice of 
physical or moral health. The kind of life and of toil and effort 
that this involved, has committed fearful havoc among our youth 
sending many a weakling to an early grave ; and destroying in 
many of even the more robust, the germs of all healthy and vigor- 
rous physical and mental life. AnU the result has been helped 
by the character of the tests appointed by the Universities, mak- 
ing no allowance for individual idiosyncracies, and paying no 
regard to the natural bent of different minds. 

There will always be some endowed with native vitality and 
force too great to succumb to the strongest adverse influences, 
but the effect on the generality of our youth has been disastrous. 
I will not venture to estimate what percentage of them turn out 
really capable men, but no one will deny that the majority are 
singularly devoid of the many-sidedness, the savoir faire, the 
" sweetness and light," the power to assimilate experience, which 
we are accustomed to look for in a cultured man ; and it is well 
to observe here, that these are the very qualities which a corpo- 
rate school life under wholesome discipline is calculated to foster. 
We educate our sons not to turn them into book-worms of the 
cloister, but to enable them to make an energetic use of their 
lives and of such powers as Heaven has given them. But our 
colleges turn out youths more fit to shine in the one role than in 
the other. They seem to develop no power of observation, or 
of a just criticism of life, no artistic aptitude no sense of propor- 
tion, none of that capacity so useful in the battle of life, of put- 
ting themselves in the position of others in order to deduce a 
right view of themselves and their merits. One practical issue of 
this arrested development is the disastrous mess njany of our 
educated countrymen make of their politics (in allowing them- 
selves to be deluded with aspirations singularly out of tune yrith 


the whole tenor of their political position and their just political 
claims). Another is their incapacity to form a correct estimate 
of the responsibilities and natural limitations of the Empire to 
which they belong. A more vigorous and versatile training, a 
healthier and manlier use of the opportunities of youth would 
have saved them from these errors and given them a juster view 
of their rights and duties. 

To turn to another side of the question, we are perhaps the 
only people in the world who have submitted without protest 
to a system of public education divorced from religion. It 
is not necessary to be a professedly religious man to perceive 
that the weakening of the sanctions provided by religion, strikes 
at the root of national life, and that a loss of reverence is pre- 
monitory of national degeneration. The State has gone out of its 
way to act as a pioneer of higher education, but it cannot teach us 
morals or religion. In an Empire like that of India, which is 
made up of a congeries of States and communities widely divergent 
in character, language and religion, the very existence of a great 
controlling Power must of necessity depend on the observance 
on the part of that Power of a policy of strict neutrality. It is 
for us, not for the State, to see to our own national needs and 
provide ourselves with means of progressive national development. 
Is it not enough that our lot has been cast under a Government 
ever ready to stretch out to us a friendly hand of no uncertain 
helpfulness, if we will only prove that we are prepared to help 
ourselves. In what other Asiatic kingdom do the subject races 
enjoy such unfettered freedom of action, such a boundless field 
for expansion, or such unstinted sympathy from the State in all 
useful directions of human activity ? 

We have, therefore, no reason to relax, on the contrary we 
have every reason to redouble our efforts in the direction of provid- 
ing a proper seat of learning for ourselves, untramelled by 
conditions inseparable from State direction, and better suited to 
our national wants than Universities based upon strictly neutral 
and secular lines can ever be. We, Mahomedans, have hitherto 
maintained an attitude of reserve towards the learning of the 
West as dispensed to us by State institutions, and we had, per- 
haps, our reason for doing so. The men of learning amongst us, 
our Logicians, Metaphysicians and Juris-consults of the old 
school, saw samples of the new learning only in the raw, half- 
educated youths turned out of our schools and colleges, and 
hastily concluded that it was like them, eminently superficial. 
The utmost concession they were prepared to make was, that the 
Westerns excelled in the hikmat-e-amali (practical sciences) 
which have never been held in high esteem by school-men of 
either the East or the West, but they scoffed at their hikmat- 
e-nazari (speculative sciences) and believed thftt thay were not 
even known to them* except in the most crude and elementary 
form, and that, at least in 'this most important branch of learning, 


the East could still give lessons to the West. There are learned 
Mahomedans in all parts of India, who still believe that the skill 
of European nations is confined to the building of great railways, 
warships, formidable guns and other infernal machines, and 
that thay have no aptitude for the sciences which deal with 
abstract subjects or the phenomena of the mind. And this ig- 
norance will not be dispelled, or the ground cleared for the recep- 
tion of the splendid heritage which our Western rulers are willing 
to share with us, unless we set to work and complete the task we 
have begun. And what we are about to undertake is nothing 
new or isolated. We are carrying on, on the banks ( bf the Ganges, 
work that was initiated on the banks of the Euphrates twelve 
hundred years ago. It is true that the learning and wisdom 
that our rude and warlike ancestors borrowed from Europe in 
Baghdad in the day of the great Abbasides, they gave back with 
interest at Cardova under the great Omayyid Kings of Spain. 
Are we, then, to hold aloof now, from a sentiment of false pride 
as suicidal as it is base, if the pendulum has swung back and we 
find ourselves again in the position of those to whom the rich 
store-house of philosophy and science was opened for the first 
time ? Indeed, if the lessons of the past have not been lost on us, 
we ought to be wiser in our generation, and instead of being con- 
tent with the partial and second-hand teaching to which alone 
our ancestors had access, we ought to go to the very fountain- 
head of the new learning, and assimilate as much of it as we can, 
instead of absorbing it indiscriminately and in an indigestible 
form as some of us have hitherto been content to do. 

These ends, however, will never be attained, unless we part 
company at the threshold with the stereotyped system of pass- 
ing examinations which the old Universities of Bengal, Madras 
and Bombay have brought into vogue, and build our new Alma 
Mater on the lines of the venerable seats of learning that have 
made Oxford and Cambridge famous all over the world. The 
nucleus of a corporate school life exists in the boarding arrange- 
ments of the Aligarh College ; let it be expanded so as to furnish 
residence, say, for a thousand youths. We have three European 
Professors living within the College bounds, and intimately associ- 
ated, as they should be, with the resident students. Let their num- 
ber be increased until we have a competent European Professor for 
every branch of Western learning that we wish to cultivate, 
and a tutorial staff that may in time be partly recruited from 
among the graduates of our own University. But we must 
always have not merely a good leaven, but an actual preponder- 
ance of highly paid European Professors and Tutors at any rate* 
for a very long time to come. On this one point there must be 
no delusion. If any one offers us a different advice, if we are 
told for example, that where Indian graduates are available, 
we need not go to the expense of engaging Englishmen on high 
pay to teach us, we may rest assured* that the advice proceeds' 
from absolute ignorance of the very rudimenjs of western culture. 


I hope the leaders of the present movement will not give ear to 
guch counsel. In any scheme for the institution of a national 
University on the model of Oxford or Cambridge, the allotment 
of funds sufficient for the employment of an ample staff of well 
paid European Professors and Tutors and the maintenance of a 
carefully devised system of discipline are the two essential points, 
the rest is of secondary importance and a mere question of detail. 
It is no doubt possible to secure the services of excellent Indian 
masters for about a fourth of the salary that will have to be 
offered, if we resolve as I hope we shall, on securing competent 
English scholars to help us in developing the scheme, but be- 
tween the two there will lie the whole difference between substance 
and shadow, between reality and sham. The best of Indian 
teachers, among whom, let it be freely admitted, we count some 
ripe scholars and most admirable men, can only impart to us the 
knowledge and culture of the West at second hand. Nothing 
but close and constant contact with European scholars and 
gentlemen will penetrate through the almost impermeable crust 
of sloth, prejudice and ignorance which has accumulated on the 
Mahomedans of India, during the inglorious period following the 
palmy days of their dominion. Our youth need to be taken out 
of their homes and home surroundings, and placed in uninter- 
rupted view of high ideals, of which they can form only a faint 
and distant conception from the study of text-books for the 
passing of examinations. It is only by intimate association 
with living men of high scholarship, good manners and pure life, 
that they can be expected to learn to value these qualities and 
exert themselves to attain them. It is in their leisure hours, in 
the refectory and on the play ground, more than in the lecture 
room, that the best part of the education of youth, that which 
influences character, is really carried on. It is there that the 
lessons of unselfishness, fair dealing, pluck, habits of truth, manly 
pride and obedience are to be learnt, lessons without which the 
learning of an Aristotle or an Averroes were vain and value- 

But we should be doing less than well for ourselves if in fitting 
up a place for the cultivation of Western sciences we were to 
neglect the vast stores of valuable thought that we have 
received as a heritage from our own ancestors. No one can hope 
to be able to interpret the West to the East, to graft Western on 
Eastern culture, who is not familiar with both. A finished Eu- 
ropean scholar will be able to do well for himself, but he will be 
able to do little for the mass of his countrymen and co-religionists, 
if he cannot bring home to them the precious knowledge of the 
West in terms of Eastern learning. We need some scholars who 
will make it their business to effect a reform in the modes of 
ratiocination stereotyped among our schoolmen by exposing its 
fallacy. This is the only way in which we can hope to penetrate 
into the vefy ark of t*he citadel of sophistry and verbiage with 
which ages of blind faith* in medieval methods have encrusted 


our philosophy of knowledge. We need men able to give our own 
old-world Maulvies a newer organon than that of Aristotle and 
Averroes, and introduce them to the more fruitful tests of truth 
which Modern Science has placed in our hands. 

We have hitherto had no one to do this service for us, for the 
simple reason that few have interested themselves in such re- 
condite issues, and those who have, to them the instrument and 
the means have been wanting. I know of only two Mahomedans 
who have made an attempt in this direction, one of whom died 
before he had taken more than the first step, and, the other, his 
son, is still in the full vigour of youth, and froifi him we have 
reason to expect much fuller work than he has hitherto set forth. 
To them to the father as well as to the son was given the divine 
gift of a vigorous mind stored with what is best both in Eastern 
and Western learning. It remains to be seen, if the survivor 
will have the leisure to devote to the task which remains to be 
done and which he alone, perhaps, of all living Mahomedans is 
able to do. 

I have no sympathy, however, with those who would or- 
ganise a distinct Faculty of Oriental learning in connection with 
the Mahomedan University. We may rest assured that 
Mahomedans^left to themselves, will never let their old learn- 
ing die. We have well found d schools at Deobund, Arrah, Hy- 
derabad and other towns, where Mahomedan learning is kept up 
as it should be, and a movement has recently been set on foot for 
a more systematic inculcation of it which commands the sympathy 
of all right-minded Mahomedans. The University should 
in my opinion, confine itself to a combination of Western culture 
with that of the East as represented in their language and litera- 
ture (Arabic, Sanskrit and Persian), specialists being encouraged 
to go deeper into them after a certain stage of University educa- 
tion, which can be determined in working out the details of the 
scheme. If we had amongst us a public spirited philanthropist 
and patriot like Mr. Tata of Bombay, or the late Sikh nobleman 
in the Punjab, we might listen to those who would institute a 
distinctly Oriental side in the University. But as it is, I think 
we shall have reason to congratulate ourselves, if we succeed 
in raising the ten lakhs to which the Memorial Committee has 
modestly confined its expectations. Let us not dissipate the 
little we may collect, in an attempt which, if successful, is not 
likely to help us much towards the progress and advancement 
which are, at the present moment, most needed and most to be 

It will serve no useful purpose at this early stage of the 
movement to enter into details or draft a complete scheme for 
the proposed University : this is a work for which a Sub-Com- 
mittee will have,to be appointed, when funds have been provided, 
and practical operations have to be commenced. Btft it will not 
be out of place to remark here that the University will be 


incomplete, if, like the Aligarh College, it is not able to found a 
a Faculty of Physical Science and Biology with properly fitted 
up laboratories for the experimental exposition of the different 
studies that group themselves round them. I have singled out 
this Faculty for special mention, because I hold that there is 
no discipline more suited to correct the peculiar errors of the 
Mahomedan mind than a study of these branches of knowledge 
in the light of modern methods. If we have to commence work 
only with the minimum number of Faculties, this group should, 
I think, in apy case be one of those selected. There are four 
others that are* in my opinion equally indispensable, namely : 
(I) Languagesg (II) Mathematics, (III) Philosophy and Logic, 
(IV) History, Political Science and Economics. These fivcj to 
begin with, should furnish a sound foundation for the young 
University. Law is another indispensable discipline, but for 
his we can afford to wait until funds can be spared ; we can also 
afford to wait for the European Classics and Modern Languages 
groups ; I do not think they are essential. 

In spite of what I have said about Oriental learning, I do not 
think I would make the higher study of Arabic, Persian or Sans- 
krit compulsory on all, but I would encourage it by holding out 
valuable pecuniary rewards. As for that matter I would encour- 
age all specialization and thoroughness of study, be it in a group 
of cognate languages, or in softie special branch of Science or His- 
tory. For every graduate need not be a profound Oriental 
Scholar, any more than every gradiiate need be a Scientist or 
a Mathematician ; our aim should be to encourage all branches 
of learning, leaving each under-graduate free to choose accord- 
ing to his natural bent of mind. 

It remains to be asked, in conclusion, what is to be done with 
the School Department now attached to the College ? I, for one 
see no reason for making any change. As the College grew out 
of a school, so will the University grow out of the College by what 
m ay be likened to a process of gemination from within. The 
College will remain in existence and so should the school. When 
the number of under-graduates has outgrown the accommoda- 
tion available in the Boarding Establishments already in exist- 
ence, and we are pressed for room, it might be housed separately 
with an independent establishment of its own, but still under 
the eye of the University authorities. The influences that will 
be brought to bear on under-graduate life, should not, I think, 
be denied to the school, in which they are supposed to receive 
their preliminary training at an age much more impressionable 
than when they enter the University. In fact the school ought 
to be kept in an increased state of completeness of equipment 
and efficiency as a model for other Mahomedan schools that wish 
to act as feeders to tb higher institution. School work even at 
Aligarh is by no means what it might be, if only funds could be 
spared for its improvement. There is room for the introduction 


of many of the more modern methods of training, such as 
the Kindergarten, manual training, etc., and the employment of 
increased European agency, specially that of European Lady- 
teachers in the manipulation of infant classes. But all this is 
a question of funds. For the present our last word and final 
resolution in this connection should obviously be to make every- 
thing subordinate to the foundation of the University, 

In hazarding the preceding observations I have taken it for 
granted that our pattern has already been chosen but in reality 
we have three to choose between, namely, the /Universities of 
London, Edinburgh and Oxford or Cambridge. I need say no- 
thing about the first, because the promoters of the schem'e seem all 
to be of one mind in discarding the system which that University 
represents as unsuitable to our needs. Edinburgh is something 
between London and Oxford ; for, unlike London, it is a teaching 
not a mere examining University ; and yet, unlike Oxford and 
Cambridge, it does not attempt to guide or influence under- 
graduate life. We, however, want something more than this, we 
want our youth influenced to high issues, their lives moulded 
after the best European models of excellence, and their mental 
and moral tendencies guided towards lofty ideals. We shall do 
wisely, therefore, to follow Oxford or Cambridge and copy on a 
modest scale the methods that have helped to mould the national 
life of the greatest and most civilised country in the world. Now, 
the main feature of these Universities and the secret of their 
success lies in the tutorial system of training to be found in the 
Colleges grouped round them. Each College has a staff of tutors, 
one for every branch of study encouraged within its precincts. 
His functions are threefold ; he lectures on the subject which 
he has made his own ; helps in the internal government of the 
College ; and acts towards the under-graduates as their guide, 
philosopher and friend. In this capacity he is constantly ac- 
cessible to them ; often has some of them over to tea or breakfast; 
hears them read their weekly essays or translations to him, 
and in other ways gives them assistance and advice in their stud- 
ies. He encourages them to converse freely with him on politics, 
literature or art, pointing out their errors or otherwise influen- 
cing or guiding their thought. They are able to take to him all 
their little difficulties, because he has their confidence, and they 
know that they have in him both a teacher and a friend. And 
as the tutors are generally men of profound learning, high ideals 
and loftiness of character, and as an under-graduate comes in 
contact with several of them in the course of his studies it follows 
that, by the time he takes his degree, he has unconsciously imbibed, 
according to his temperament and capacity some at least of the 
good to be found in each and all. 

But even a v tutorial staff like that otthe great, Colleges of 
Oxford or Cambridge would be of little avail, if there was no 
discipline among those placed under their care. In a 


community collected together for some common pursuit, there 
must be, as the first condition of success, strict obedience to the 
laws of the community, and the necessity is all the greater when 
the community consists of youthful individuals with callow and 
unformed minds, brought together for the purpose of education. 
We must, therefore, have rules and regulations carefully devised, 
not by outsiders ignorant of the aims and objects of modern edu- 
cation, but by men who have themselves received and are capable 
of imparting the highest culture of the day. And rules once 
framed must be strictly carried out without outside interference 
of any sort or*kind. 

Going back for a moment to the subject of Oriental studies, 
may I be allowed to add that, while deprecating any attempt to 
burden the University with the dead-weight of a purely Oriental 
Department, I would lay every possible stress on thoroughness 
of work in the Oriental studies taken up in combination with 
English and other subjects. I have hitherto carefully abstained 
from entering into the details of the scheme, because these, in 
my opinion, should be left to be worked out, by a Committee 
of experts appointed in that behalf, but I hope I shall be pardoned 
if I venture to point out here what seem to me to be the line and 
direction which Arabic studies should take in a Mohammedan 
University. For an ordinary scholar who took up the combi- 
nation, I think it would be enough if he acquired a fair knowledge 
of the language and its literature ; in other words, if he was able 
to read and write in classical Arabic without difficulty. But 
for specialization in this branch, I would suggest four alternative 
courses : 

I. Arabic Language and Literature including higher Gram- 
mar and Rhetoric, History of Literature, Bibliography and Phil- 

For this school, as it may be called, I would suggest the 
following books among others : 

Mugni and Mofassal with their commentaries. 

Agani. Al-karqil of Mobarrad. The Koran with commen- 

Motawal. All the poets of the first and second period. 

Nahj-ul-Balagat with the great commentary of the Mo- 

Hadith as in some one of the six collections. 

The prose works of Imad-e-Katib. Other names can be added, 
but these will suffice to indicate the direction such studies should 
take. For Philology recourse must be had to European works 
on the Comparative Philology of Semitic Languages. 

II. Mohammedan Jlistory including Biography and Bib- 
liography. The reading for this subject should include th r 


works of Ibn-e-Hisham, Tabari, Ibn-e-Athir,'udi, Ibn-e- 
Khaldun, Ibn-e-Khaelakan, and some of the available Tabakat, 
Hadith being consulted for side lights. 

III. Philosophy and Logic. I think the attention of 
the student should, in this branch, be confined to the older writers 
such as Ibn-e-Rushd (Averrosc), Abu All ibn-e-Sina (Avicenna), 
Mulla Bakar, Tusi, Sadr-ud-din and others. 

IV. Theology. 

This should obviously include a thorough acquaintance with 
the Koran and its chief commentaries ; Hadith as"represented in 
the six principal collections ; Law and Jurisprudence. Attention 
should be specially directed to controversial questions of im- 
portance, such as the limits of Authority and Reason according 
to different schools ; the authenticity of historical and tradi- 
tional evidence ; and similar other matters of importance in lay- 
ing the foundation of a new school of criticism and thought. 
Let me add that no study in this school would be complete that 
does not include an intelligent historical survey of the doctrine 
and practice of Sufism. 

Apart from this school, practical, religious teaching should 
to some exteirt form part of the general education of all Moham- 
medan youths, taking in only the essentials, and leaving doc- 
trinal details and controversial matters to specialists. Moham- 
medanism is a very simple faith, there is nothing mysterious 
or recondite in its creed ; nothing complex in its ritual. All 
that is really necessary could be brought together within the 
compass of a couple of pamphlets of moderate size, in the Hind- 
dustani language, which school boys could learn before advancing 
to higher studies. Nothing would remain to be done except 
to make the observance of all obligatory religious commmand- 
ments part and parcel of the scheme of collegiate discipline. It 
would, in my opinion, be a grievous error to insist upon anything 
more elaborate except in the case of students who take up the 
theological school. I venture to think these limitations are 
quite consistent with the best Mohammedan teaching of the day, 
and will, I hope, be accepted by those who will, by their position, 
have an influential part in shaping the course of the University. 

I submit these observations to the members of the Memorial 
Committee and the Mohammedan Educational Conference of 
Lahore with a considerable amount of diffidence, because I am 
aware that among them are gentlemen of light and leading much 
better fitted to shape the course of future Mohammedan culture, 
and with a much better title to lay down the law that should 
govern our future educational policy. What I have ventured to 
put before them are merely tentative suggestions, contributions 
to the fuller discussion of the subject by abler and more ex- 
perienced men th&n myself. 

Memorial drawn up for presentation to 
H. E. the Earl of Minto then Viceroy 
of India* 



P.C., G. C.S.I., G.C.I.E., G.C.M.G., 

Viceroy and Governor-General of India. 

AVAILING ourselves of the permission graciously accorded 
to us, we the undersigned nobles, jagirdars, talukdars 
merchants, and other^, representing a large body of the 
Mohammedan Subjects of His Majesty the King-Emperor in diffe- 
rent parts of India, beg most respectfully to approach Your Excel- 
lency with the following memorial for your favourable considera- 

2. We have no need to be reminded of the incalculable be- 
nefits conferred by British rule on the teeming millions belonging 
to divers races, and professing divers religions, who form the 
population of the vast continent of India. Nor can we forget 
the chaos and misrule from which British arms extricated us 
when the country was a prey to an innumerable host of adven- 
turers bent on rapine and plunder. We have good reason to be 
grateful for the peace, security, personal freedom, and liberty of 
worship that we now enjoy, and, from the wise and enlightened 
character of the Government, we have every reasonable ground 
for anticipating that these benefits will be progressive and that 
India will, in the future occupy an increasing^ important position 
in the comity of nations. 

3. One of the most important characteristics of British policy 
iu India is the increasing deference that has, so far as possible, 
been paid from the first to the views and wishes of the people of 
the country in matters affecting their interests, with due regard 
always to the diversity of race and religion which forms such an 
important feature of all Indian problems. 

4. Beginning with fihe confidential and unobtrusive method 
of consulting influential members of important communities in 


different parts of the country, this principle was gradually ex- 
tended by the recognition of the right of recognised political or 
commercial organisations to communicate to the authorities 
their criticisms and views on measures of public importance ; and, 
finally, by the nomination and election of direct representatives 
of the people in Municipalities, Local Boards, and above all 
in the Legislative Chambers of the country- This last element is, 
we understand, about to be dealt with *by the Commission ap- 
pointed by Your Excellency at the initiative of His Majesty's 
Secretary of State for India, with the view of giving it further 
extension ; and it is with reference mainly to our'claim to a fair 
share in such extended representation that we have ventured to 
approach Your Excellency on the present occasion. 

5. The Musalmans of India number, according to the census 
taken in the year 1901, over sixty -two millions, or more than 
one-fifth of the total population of His Majesty's Indian Do- 
minions ; while if the Native States and Burma were excluded 
from the computation and a reduction made for the uncivilized 
portions of the community enumerated under the heads of Ani- 
mists and other minor religions, the proportion of Musalmans to 
the whole population of British India would be found to be ap- 
proximately icmc-fourth. In these circumstances, we desire to 
submit that, under any system uf representation, extended or 
limited, a minority amounting to , quarter of the population 
and in itself more numerous than the entire population of any 
first class European Power, except Russia may justly lay claim 
to adequate recognition as an important factor in the State. We 
venture, indeed, with Your Excellency's permission, to go a step 
further than this and urge that the position accorded to the 
Musalman community in any kind of representation, direct or 
indirect, and in all other ways affecting their status and influence, 
should be commensurate not* merely with their numerical strength 
but also with their political importance ; and that, in estimating 
the latter, due weight should be given to the position which they 
occupied in India a little more than a hundred years ago, and of 
which the traditions have naturally not faded from their minds. 

6. The Musalmans of India have hitherto placed implicit 
reliance on the sense of justice and love of fair dealing that has 
always characterised their rulers and have in consequence ab- 
stained from pressing their claims by methods that might prove 
at all embarrassing ; but earnestly as we desire that the Musal- 

Z Ff \ U J d n0t , in the future de P art from that excellent 
and time-honoured tradition, recent events have stirred uti 

M^hiiTSt y am ng ?" y Unger e cneration of Mohammed P 
ans which might in certain circumstances and under certain 


7. We, therefore, pray that, the representation 'we herewith 
venture to submit, after a careful consideration of the views and 

wishes of a large number of our co-religionists in all parts of India, 
may be favoured with Your Excellency's earnest attention. 

8. We hope Your Excellency will pardon our stating at the 
outset that representative institutions of the European type are, 
entirely opposed to the genius and traditions of Eastern Nations, 
and many of the most thoughtful members of our community 
look upon them as totally unsuitable to the social, religious, and 
political conditions obtaining in India. Since, however, our rulers 
have, in pursuance of their own immemorial instincts and tradi- 
tions, found .it expedient to give these institutions au increas- 
ingly important place in the Government of the country, we 
Mohammedans cannot any longer, in justice to our own national 
interests, hold aloof from participating in the conditions to which 
their policy has given rise. We must therefore acknowledge with 
gratitude that such representation as the Musalmans of India 
have hitherto enjoyed has been due to a sense of justice and 
fairness on the part of Your Excellency and your illustrious 
predecessors in office, and the heads of Local Governments by 
whom the Mohammedan members of Legislative Chambers have 
with scarcely one exception been invariably nominated ; but we 
venture to submit that the representation thus accorded to us 
has necessarily been inadequate to our requirements and has 
not always carried with it the approval of those whom the nomi- 
nees were selected to repre^nt. This state of things has, in exist- 
ing circumstances, been unavoidable ; for while, on the one hand, 
the number of nominations reserved to the Viceroy and Local 
Governments has necessarily been strictly limited, the selection, 
on the other hand, of really representative men has, in the absence 
of any reliable method of ascertaining the direction of popular 
choice, been far from easy. As for the results of selection, it is 
most unlikely that the name of any Mohammedan candidate will 
ever be submitted for the approval of Government by the electoral 
bodies as now constituted, unless he is prepared to forego the 
right of private judgment and undertake to vote with the major- 
ity in all matters of importance. We submit that a Mohammedan 
elected on these terms necessarily ceases to represent his own 
community and becomes a mere mandatory of the Hindu major- 
ity. Nor can \ve, in fairness, find fault with the desire of our 
Hindoo fellow-subjects to take full advantage of their strength 
and vote only for members of their own community, or for per- 
sons who, if not Hindoos, are pledged to vote for the interests of 
the Hindoo community. It is true that we have many and im- 
portant interests in common with our Hindoo fellow-countrymen, 
and it will always be a matter of the utmost satisfaction to us to 
see these interests safeguarded by the presence in our Legislative 
Chambers of able supporters of these interests, irrespective of 
their nationality. We Musalmans have, however, additional 
interests qf our own,which are not shared by other communities 
and these have hitherto suffered grevious loss from the fact that 
tljey have not been adequately represented. Even in the 


Provinces in which the Mohammedans constitute a distinct major* 
ity of the population, they have too often been treated as though 
thev were inappreciably small political factors that might with- 
out* unfairness be neglected. This has been the case, to some 
extent in the Punjab ; but in a more marked degree in Sindh and 
in Eastern Bengal, where Mohammedan interests have suffered, 
owing partly to the backwardness of the community in education, 
for which they are not wholly to blame, but still more to their 
ignorance of the arts of self-assertion and political agitation. 

9. Before formulating our views with regard ty the election 
of representatives, we beg to observe that the political importance 
of a community to a considerable extent gains strength or suffers 
detriment according to the position that the members of that 
community occupy in the service of the State. If, as is unfortu- 
nately the case with the Mohammedans, they are not adequately 
represented in this manner, they lose in the prestige and influence 
which are justly their due. Our first prayer, therefore, is that 
Your Excellency will be graciously pleased to issue strict orders 
that, both in the Gazetted and the Subordinate and Ministerial 
services of all Indian Provinces, a due proportion of Mohammed- 
ans to be locally determined shall always find place. Orders 
of like import have, at times, been issued by Local Governments 
in some Provinces, but have never, unfortunately, been strictly 
enforced, on the ground that qualified Mohammedans were not 
forthcoming. This allegation, however true it may have been at 
one time, is no longer tenable now, and wherever the will to em- 
ploy them is not wanting, the supply of qualified Mohammedans, 
we are happy to be able to assure Your Excellency, is greater 
than any possible demand. 

10. As Municipal and District Boards have to deal with im- 
portant local interests, affecting to a great extent the health and 
comfort of the inhabitants, we shall, we hope, be pardoned if 
we solicit, for a moment, Your Excellency's attention to the 
position of Musalmans thereon before passing on to higher con- 
cerns. These institutions form, as it were, the initial rungs in 
the ladder of Self-Government, and it is here that the principle 
of representation is brought home intimately to the intelligence 
of the people. Yet the position of Musalmans on these Boards is 
not at present regulated by any guiding principle capable of 
general application, and practice varies in different localities. 
The Aligarh Municipality for example, is divided into six wards, 
and each ward returns one Hindoo and one Mohammedan Commis- 
sioner, and the same principle, we understand, is adopted in some 
other Municipalities, but in many localities the Musalman tax- 
payers are not adequately represented. We would, therefore, 
respectfully suggest that local authority should, in every case, 
be required to declare the number of Hindoos and Mohammedans 
entitled to seats on Municipal and Local Bokrds, such 'proportion 
to be determined in accordance with r tlie numerical strength, 


social status, and local influence of either community in con- 
sultation, if necessary, with their leading men. 

11. We would also suggest that the Senates and Syndicates 
of Indian Universities might, so far as possible, be similarly dealt 
with ; that there should, in other words, be an authoritative 
declaration of the proportion in which Mohammedans are entitled 
to be represented in either body, whether by selection or nomina- 
tion or both. 

12. We now proceed to the consideration of our share in the 
Legislative Cfetmbers of the country. Beginning with the Pro- 
vincial Councils, we would suggest that, as in the case of Munici- 
palities and Local Boards, the proportion of Mohammedan re- 
presentatives entitled to a seat should be determined and declared 
with due regard to the important considerations which we have 
ventured to point out in paragraph 5 of this Memorial ; and that 
the Mohammedan members of District Boards and Munici- 
palities, and the Registered Graduates of Universities, should be 
formed into Electoral Colleges, and be authorised, in accordance 
with such rules of procedure as Your Excellency's Government 
may be pleased to prescribe in that behalf, to return the number 
of members that may be declared to be eligible. 

13. With regard to the Imperial Legislative Council, whereon 
the due representation of Mohammedan interests is a matter of 
the utmost importance, we would solicit : 

(1) That in the cadre of the Council, at least, one member 

out of every four should always be a Mohammedan. 

(2) That, as far as possible, appointment by election should 

be given preference over nomination ; and that in 
any case the majority of members should be ap- 
pointed by election. 

(8) That for purposes of choosing Mohammedan represen- 
tatives, Mohammedan members of the Provincial 
Councils and Mohammedan Fellows of Universities 
should be invested with electoral powers to be ex- 
ercised in accordance with such procedure as may 
be prescribed by Your Excellency's Government 
in that behalf. 

14. The methods of election we have ventured to suggest are 
necessarily tentative : they may even be found, in certain res- 
pects, defective ; but they are the simplest and the least compli- 
cated of the two or three that have occurred to us in the very 
limited time at our command. But, provided the choice be 
left free and unhampered in the hands of respectable and educated 
Mohammedans, we shall have no hesitation in accepting any 
other method that may be considered more practicable. 

15. We have reason, to believe that the generality of Moham- 
hiedans in aft parts of India feel it a grievance that Mohammedan 
Judges are not nior^ frequently appointed on the High Courts 


and Chief Courts of Judicature. Since the creation of these 
Courts only three Mohammedan lawyers have held these honour- 
able appointments, all three of whom have happily justified their 
elevation in a most signal manner. It is not, therefore, an extra- 
vagant request on their behalf that, whenever possible, a Moham- 
medan judge should be given a seat on each of these Courts. 
Qualified lawyers, eligible for these posts, can always be found 
if not in one Province, then in another, and seeing that a 
Bengalee Judge sits on the bench of the Punjab Chief Court, 
there should be no objection to a Mohammedan, /provided he is 
qualified being transferred from one Province to another. 

1C. There has lately been some talk, we understand of the 
possible appointment of one or more Indian members on the 
Executive Council of the Viceroy and the India Council in Eng- 
land. Should such appointments be contemplated, we beg that 
the claims of Mohammedans in that behalf may not be overlooked. 
More than one Mohammedan we venture to say, will be found in 
the ranks of the Covenanted and Uncovenantcd Services fit 
to serve with distinction in either of these august Chambers. 
We have at this moment, a retired Judge of the High Court of 
Calcutta, domiciled in England, who, by his ability as a lawyer, 
his standing as a scholar, and his reputation as an experienced 
and versatile man of the world, cannot fail lo be an ornament to 
the India Council : we mean Mr. Syed Amir AH, in whom the 
Mohammedans of India repose the fullest confidence. 

17. In conclusion, we beg to assure Your Excellency that in 
assisting the Musalman subjects of His Majesty at this crisis in 
the directions indicated in the present Memorial, Your Excellency 
will be strengthening the foundations of their unswerving loyalty 
to the Throne arid laying the foundations of their political re- 
generation and national prosperity, and Your Excellency's name 
will be remembered with gratitude by their posterity for genera- 
tions to come. 

We have the honour to subscribe ourselves, 

Your Excellency's 
Most obedient and humble servants, 

Congratulatory Address by Honourable 
Mr. Bayley the British Resident at 
Hyder^ad on the occasion of Nawab 
Emad-ul-Mulk Bahadur's appointment 
to the India Council in 1907 


MRS. BAYLEY and I have asked you to meet us here to-night 
in order that we may all join in drinking the health of 
our honoured friend Mr. Sayyid Husain Bilgrami, Nawab 
Imad-ul-Miilk Bahadur, and in wishing him God-speed and all 
happiness and success in the new phase of his distinguished 
career on which he is about to enter. * 

You are all aware of the circumstances which arc taking him 
from our midst ; how His Majesty's Government desire fo give 
the natives of this country a larger share in its administration 
than they have hitherto enjoyed, and how, as one means to this 
end, the Council of the Secretary of State for India has been 
enlarged by the addition to it of two Indian members. This 
measure, though carried into effect by a Liberal ministry, has 
met with the unanimous approval of both the great political 
parties in England, and of nearly all shades of public 
opinion in India. The importance which public opinion has 
attached to it in India has been shown by the eager specu- 
lation which was rife for some time in both the English and Ver- 
nacular Press as to the probable selections for the new appoint- 
ments, and by the vigour with which the claims of particular 
candidates were urged, though had this not been the case, the 
necessity for starting so momentous an innovation on right lines 
by putting the right men into the right places would have been 
obvious to all. It is interesting to note that not one single writer 
anticipated the selections which have been made, and no stronger 
proof than this could have been afforded of Mr, Morley's states- 
juan-like desire to number among his advisers and colleagues 
men of sound sense and experience who have never identified 
themselves with any political party. I have not the pleasure 
of knowing Mr. Gupta, who doubtless owes his selection in a 
great measure to the fact that he has risen to a higher position 
,in the executive service of Government than haV; ever been held 
by any native of British India since the establishment of British 


supremacy in this country. I can, however, safely say that when 
Mr. Sayyid Husain's appointment was announced it was gener- 
ally recognised both in British India and here in Hyderabad, 
where he is best known, that no more judicious selection could 
have been made. It is no exaggeration to say that the appoint- 
ment commands the entire sympathy, not only of the Musalman 
community, but of all those who are most qualified to form a 
correct opinion as to what is best for the welfare of India. It 
has been hailed with general satisfaction, and we here have 
special reason to he proud of "he honour which has fallen to the 
lot of one whose career is so fully identified with the Hyderabad 
State, and who has won his way to distinction by loyally serving 
his august Chief, His Highness the Nizam. No one, I believe, 
was more surprised by the choice than Mr. Sayyid Husain him- 
self, and the modesty which prevented him from thinking of 
himself as a possible selection, ha* only been surpassed by the 
readiness and courage with which ho responded to the call 
to enter on a new life in a distant land at an age when most men 
ask for little more than the enjoyment of well-earned and dig- 
nified leisure among the surroundings in which they have lived. 
That this had been our friend's ambition is clear from the fact 
that he had applied for pemission to retire from his appointment 
as Director of Public Instruction before the engagement of the 
Council was contemplated. You will, I am sure, all agree that 
a man who, in this way, gives up tRe afternoon of his life to the 
service of his country is deserving of the highest praise. Nawab 
Imadul-Mulk Bahadur has, during the last few days, been the 
recipient of so many proofs in the shape of fare-well entertain- 
ments and addresses, of the esteem in which he is held that he 
may well be a trifle weary of hearing the events of his career 
recapitulated. I will therefore try to spare his blushes on this 
occasion and will merely remind you that he was selected over 80 
years ago as one of the distinguished band of young men brought 
into the State by that great and sagacious administrator, Sir 
Salar Jung, whom he served as Private Secretary and whom he 
accompanied to England, that he afterwards became Private 
Secretary to His Highness the Nizam, and that he has for many 
years filled the post of Director of Public Instruction from which 
he recently retired, carrying with him a token of his master's 
regard in the shape of a special pension, and that esteem which 
can only be earned by a man of scrupulous rectitude and high 
character, and by one who has fearlessly done his duty in the 
state of life to which he has been called. His services to the 
younger generation have not been confined to Hyderabad. He- 
has always taken an active and sympathetic interest in the great 
Anglo-Muhammadan College at Aligarh, and he has constantly 
impressed on the young the principles of loyalty and self-control. 
He has also nev^r failed to use his utmost endeavour to bridge 
over the gulf which seems sometimes to separate* Europeans 
from Indians, not by urging a mere surface imitation of manners 


and habits and that constant social intercourse which the customs 
of both races render so difficult, but by pointing out to each all 
that is best in the other, and by striving to promote real friend- 
ship and regard founded on the only firm and lasting basis of 
mutual understanding, confidence, and respect. I have just 
mentioned Aligarh and I am sure that you will pardon me if I 
digress for a moment to express my deep regret at the great loss 
which the College has sustained in the death of its Honorary 
Secretary, another distinguished Hyderabad noble, the Nawab 
Muhsin ul-MuJk Bahadur, and my hope, which is shared by all 
who have at fieart the welfare of Islam in India, that a successor 
may soon be found fit in all respects to follow in the footsteps 
of the Secretary who has just passed away and, a still more 
difficult task, in that of the great founder of the College, Sir 
Sayyid Ahmed. 

Nearly all of you who are present to-night have had the privi- 
lege of knowing Mr. Sayyid Hussain longer than I have, and are 
better qualified than I am to appreciate him at his true worth. 
It has however been my good fortune to see much of him during 
the two-and-a-half years that I have been here, and I can say 
with truth that his departure will mean for me the loss of an 
esteemed friend whose visits have never failed to alford me both 
pleasure and advantage. In a letter which I received from him 
the other day he referred i/i most kindly terms to the fact that 
his family and my own had been united for three generations by 
ties of mutual friendship and regard. I am very glad to think 
that this is so, and I trust that the presence here to-night of his 
four sons and of my own eldest son, who is just beginning his 
Indian career, is an earnest for the continuance to at least a fourth 
generation of the friendly relations which have endured so long. 
It is relations like these which do more than anything else to 
promote that good understanding between the English and 
Indian subjects of His Majesty which we all desire and which 
we are told sometimes, though I hope without sufficient cause, is 
less common now than formerly. 

Ladies and Gentlemen, 1 will not detain you longer and I 
now call on you to drink with me to the long life and prosperity 
of Mr. Say> id Husain, and to congratulate him on the very high 
honour which has been conferred upon him- May he live to enjoy 
it for the next seven years, and return to India to pass the even- 
ing of his days in that rest which the call of duty has for the time 
being interrupted. 

Reply to the Honourable Mr. Bayley's 



IT is difficult for a man in my position to find suitable words 
wherewith to return thanks for the kind way in which Mr Bayley 
has proposed my health and the cordiality with which you have 
supported it. Mr. Bayley has alluded in flattering terms to my 
selection to fill one of the two seats on the Secretary of State's 
Council reserved for the first time for natives of India. It is 
indeed a high distinction the highest to which an Indian sub- 
ject of His Majesty can aspire, but I assure you, Ladies and 
Gentlemen, I 4 feel the kindness and encouragement I have received 
from all sides since the announcement of my appointment, spe- 
cially my reception here to-night, as a still greater distinction. 

I shall soon be leaving my country, where my work has hither- 
to lain, to take up new and more onerous duties in the great 
metropolis of the Empire, and, diffident as I naturally felt at 
first in accepting these duties I have received so much encourage- 
ment since, from my friends, that I have almost ended by believing 
that I may be, after all, a fit man to fulfil them. But having 
once had the temerity to accept the position, I will endeavour to 
do the best that lies in me in the service of my king and country 
and no one can do more. It has pleased Heaven for our own 
lasting good to place our destinies in the hands of England, and the 
interests of the two countries have become one and indivisible. 
I yield to none in the love of my country and of my people, and 
it is my firm belief that the more loyally and well I serve my 
king, the better shall I be serving my country. If I did not think 
so, if I honestly believed that the interests of the two countries 
were not identical, and that it was for us to carve out our future 
destiny apart from, and without the help of, England, I should 
not hesitate a moment to go over to the other side and join the 
ranks of the malcontents, and then perhaps Mr. and Mrs. Bayley 
would not be prepared to give me quite such a warm and cordial 

But, Ladies and Gentlemen, apart from all interested con- 
siderations, apart from the lasting good that we expect from the 
union of England and India, it is to me, as it should Jbe to every 
native of India, a matter of pride to belong to the most glorious 
and the most beneficent Empire that the world has ever seen, 


In the course of the two or three years that Mr, Bayley has 
been our Resident, I have received innumerable kindnesses from 
him, but that is nothing new. Three generations of people of 
my name have been accustomed to receive kindnesses from three 
generations of his, as he has been good enough to tell you himself 
only he has glossed it over with his usual deprecation of all 
expression of gratitude from those whom he has obliged. They 
are all like it, ever ready to do a kindness, but most reluctant to 
receive thanks in return. 

Mr. Bayley belongs to an old class of Indian officials not often 
seen now men whose names are household words in provinces in 
which they have served, and the best wish an Indian can have 
for his country is that there should be more Bayleys and Dnim- 
monds and Dampiers in India. If there were, I am sure we should 
hear no more of the unrest which is talked about so much just 

In the end I beg to offer Mr. and Mrs. Bayley my sincerest 
and most grateful thanks for the splendid send-off they have 
given me. 

Address Delivered at the Convocation of 
the Madras University, November, 1916 


IT has long been the custom in this University occasionally to 
select-one of the ordinary members of the Senate and cormnand- 
eer him for the duty of delivering the usual Convocation Add- 
ress of the year. It is due to this custom and not to any merit of 
my own, that I stand here today in obedience to the commands of 
His Excellency the Chancellor. If I had any choice in the matter 
I would prefer to sit among the audience and see my place occupied 
by some other and abler member of the Senate, in closer contact 
with the University, and more intimately acquainted with its 
history and operations than an outsider like me can claim to be. 
I therefore crave your indulgence tor the possible crudeness of 
what I have to say and your forgiveness for my deficiencies. 

I remember the time when, in Northern India, Madras was 
usually mentioned in newspapers and elsewhere as the ' Be- 
nighted Presidency,' and was treated with indifference, if not 
with actual contempt. This was probably due partly to igno- 
rance and partly to the fact that the capital of this Presidency 
was neither so brilliant nor so wealthy as Calcutta and Bombay. 
Be the cause whatever it may, certain it is that the old estimate 
was entirely abandoned when Madras came to be better known, 
and it was discovered to the utter discomfiture of those who used 
to talk of the ' Benighted Presidency ,' that education had made 
greater and more widespread progress here than anywhere else 
in India. Shall we be wrong in presuming that this progress 
and development, carried on from year to year without fuss or 
beating of the drums was the work of the Educational Department 
and of the University of Madras which has always endeavoured to 
maintain a very high standard of learning and culture among its 
alumni. Remember the galaxy of eminent men this Presidency 
has produced, men eminent as statesmen, administrators, educa- 
tionists, lawyers, journalists, like Sir T. Madhava Rao, Sir K. 
Sheshadri Aiyer, Srinivasaragava lyengar, Sir T. Muthuswami 
Iyer, Sir Bhashyam lyengar, Sir C. Sankaran Nair, Ramaswami 
Raju, T. Subba Sao, Rai Bahadur Venkayya, P % Sundram 
Pillai, Mr. Snull and others, men of \jrhom any country might 
be proud. 


And yet we must not forget that the pre-university days were 
not devoid of high culture. Calcutta and Bombay, and also 
I have no doubt Madras, could boast of many eminent scholars 
and public men before the charters laying the foundation 
of the first three Universities were granted by the Crown. In 
fact some old ' fogies ' like the present speaker, believed, and 
still believe, that the last sixty years, in spite of rapid, and 
what may be called enforced progress, have not so far pro- 
duced men to match the eminent men of pre-university days. 
It is claimed that Ram Mohan Roy, his son the first Indian Judge 
of the High Court, Dwarka Nath Mitter, Mookerjee, the founder 
of the Hindu Patriot, Sir Syed Ahmed Khan, Ishwar Chandar 
Vidyasagar, Krishto Das Pal, Shambhu Charan Mookherjea 
and others have not been matched since. The same is alleged 
about some of the eminent men of pre-university days in Bombay 
like Ranade, Telang, Bhanderkar and others. 

Be this as it may, there is not the least doubt that the three 
older Universities, and the two chartered later, have revolu- 
tionized India. The good they have done is incalculable, and if 
we Indians look upon the matter soberly and without prejudice, 
we cannot help being filled with wonder that these institutions 
should have been imported into our country by an- alien race of 
rulers, who had little to gain and, if they took a selfish view of the 
matter, much to lose by their liberality. The Germans certainly 
would never have done such a thing. It is well known that they 
laugh at the liberal policy of the British and look upon it as 
suicidal. So much the better ; our rulers have had their reward. 
It is due to this noble liberality that, upsetting all the calculations 
of the enemy, India to a man has come forward to offer her loyal 
devotion to Great Britain in her hour of need ; and with the 
exception of a few misguided men, probably won over by German 
emissaries and German gold, not a single soul from one end of 
the country to the other has betrayed signs of disloyalty or rebel- 
lion. This splendid loyalty is due, I say without fear of contra- 
diction, to our Universities, and to other civilizing influences 
introduced by our rulers. These influences have, on the one hand, 
uplifted the standard both of morality and of intelligence, and 
raised the level of national character, while, on the other hand, 
they have given birth to high political aspirations and taught 
the people legitimate methods of seeking for their attainment. 

But, unfortunately, after all is said and done, there is no 
unmixed good in the world as there is no unmixed evil. Incal- 
culable as are the benefits conferred on us by the Universities, 
they have brought in their train evils which all thoughtful men 
are begining to see and are doing their utmost to remedy. For 
years since their foundation, the Indian Universities were merely 
examining and not teaching bodies, in which the personal influence 
of the professors counted for nothing. The personal influence 
of a man like the famous D. L. Richardson did more for Calcutta 


in pre-university days than the personal influence of any pro- 
fessor that I can recall in my own undergraduate days. The 
reason is not far to seek. The passing of examinations was the 
goal, the final end and aim of education, and nothing else was 
considered to be of any value. As might have been expected, 
the result was widespread harm both to body and mind. From the 
colleges recognized by the Universities down to the schools of 
varying grades which served as feeders to the colleges, cramming 
was the dominant master whose behests none but a few daring 
spirits were at liberty to dispute. This way of acquiring know- 
ledge evidently prevailed all over the world at O5ie time, since 
a German physician of the name of Treichler I remember, was 
one of the first in the late eighties to raise his voice against it 
and to sound a note of warning. He asserted that habitual 
headache had increased among both boys and girls, that their 
headache not only destroyed much of the happiness and cheer- 
fulness of life, but that it produced impoverishment of blood 
and loss of intellectual tone, and reduced many a highly gifted 
soul to the level of a discontented drudge. I will not cite all 
the counts in his indictment which are numerous and possibly a 
little exaggerated, but he comes to the conclusion that over- 
work frustrates the real objects of education, namely, mental 
discipline and the creation of a desire for the continuous culti- 
vation of the mind. 

There was a time not very long ago when the lower classes 
of primary and secondary schools used to be crammed, and they 
are now for all I know, with boys of a very tender age who had 
to begin their drudgery thus early in life in order to be able to 
go up for their Matriculation Examination at the age of 16 or 17. 
In the course of eight or ten years of their school life, they had 
to become acquainted with the elementary branches of know- 
ledge such as Arithmetic, Geometry, History and Geography, 
through the medium of a difficult foreign tongue. This compul- 
sory grinding kept them so busy both at home and during school 
hours that they had no time to devote to their own mother tongue, 
their religion, their manners and customs, their national tradi- 
tions, or the endless stories out of their mythology or anecdotes 
of prophets, saints and sages such as in Indian domestic life used 
to be imparted to the children by their parents and elders. These 
factors, trivial as they may seem to some of us now, are assets 
of immense value in the formation of national character. 

The evils resulting from such a deficient education are mani- 
fold, one of them being the evolution of a hybrid generation of 
youths who mimic western ways and manners, trample on things 
held sacred by their elders, and ridicule their own time-honoured 
traditions and customs. They cannot write their own mother 
tongue correctly or with elegance, while with English they have 
a very superficial acquaintance. Their brains, moreover, not 
having been allowed to lie fallow during the first eight or ten 

Jrears of their lives, and develop freely, their intellectual powers 
become chtmped and stunted, and their heialth suffers. Most of 
our village elders, Patels, JPatwaries and farmers of the old type, 
compare favburably with the common product of our schools ; 
they show more self-respect and respect for others, more 
solidarity of character and a better knowledge of the world, of 
their o^n narrow world if you like, but a better knowledge. 

Allow me moreover to call attention to the fact that in spite 
of years of unwholesome drudgery in our high schools, many of 
the pupils who o in for a University career, carry with them such 
an imperfect knowledge of English that almost the whole of their 
first year is spent in trying to understand the spoken words of 
their English lecturers. Then there is always a large percentage 
of failures at the final examination, and even of those who succeed 
not more than four or five per cent are able to make their way in 
the learned professions ; while the great majority have to be 
content with earning a bare subsistence as teachers in schools or 
clerks in offices on ridiculously small salaries. 

But why in the name of commonsense, it may be asked, should 
every young man who can pass the preliminary test, or secure a 
good School-Leaving Certificate, enter on a University career 
adapted only for those who wish to follow one of the 
learned professions including Government service, or who are 
in a position to look forward to a life of leisure among their books, 
or in learned research ? There are hundreds of our youths whose 
scanty resources would be better employed in working their way 
into some one or other of the many vocations which need only 
ordinary literacy combined with hard work and perseverance, 
to ensure success. The fact however is that neither Government 
nor private enterprise has yet, to any appreciable extent, 
attempted to open the way to those minor trades and professions 
which are, nevertheless, of the greatest importance to our national 

The evils to which I have ventured to direct attention were 
at one time prevalent in our schools and colleges, and they are 
not all swept away yet in spite of the wholesome reforms both 
iii university and school education that have been carried out 
of late. The rules recently enforced in this Presidency for the 
conduct of primary and secondary schools are admirable, and 
in the hands of earnest and competent inspectors and school 
teachers they ought to prove of the greatest benefit tcr the people. 
In my humble opinion, this is one of the most important reforms 
introduced since the foundation of the University and one calcu- 
lated to cure many evils. 

Thd primary schools with which we were content until re- 
.cently, did not compare favourably with indigenous, essenti- 
ally democratic system* of education, prevalent in India from 
time immemorial. I need hfcrdly remind the audience that every 
village of any importance had its own patshala kept up by the 


people themselves, without State aid or State interference, in 
which reading, writing, and arithmetic were taught in a very 
efficient manner and where always the strictest discipline was 
maintained, which no doubt went a considerable way towards 
the formation of character. Mental arithmetic was carried to 
perfection in those schools, and village elders still laugh at the 
pupils of Government Schools who cannot do an ordinary sum 
without the help of slate and pencil. The Muslim colonists in- 
troduced maktabs almost on the same model as the Hindoo 
patshalas, only here the writing was done in pen a,nd ink on small 
wooden boards and finally on paper, instead of on the ground or 
on palm-leaves, and more reading and writing was done than 
arithmetic. The discipline, however, was even severer than in 
the patshala, and was sometimes carried to the verge of cruelty. 
But the pupils submitted cheerfully to their masters who were 
never interfered with by the parents. I know a high-born Mus- 
lim landholder who used to point out with pride the mark he 
carried on his body of the severity of his teacher, when as a boy 
he sat in the maktab with other boys of his time. But my point 
is that both the patshalas and maktabs produced much better 
results than f the Primary schools of British India until these 
recent reforms the results of which have yet to be seen. 

For higher education were provided seats of learning famous 
all over India, to which pupils flocked from all parts of the country 
and out of their own free will, without compulsion, spent years 
of hard work coupled with privation in order to carry away 
with them some of that wealth of learning which was imparted 
gratuitously to all comers without a farthing of fee. High and 
much prized academical titles were conferred at these centres of 
learning on deserving pupils without intervention of the bugbear 
of public examinations. At Benares, (Kashi) Bikrampore, 
Nuddea, Madura and other centres such schools of high 
erudition existed from time immemorial. Nor were the Muslims 
behind-hand in this respect. Ihey had similar seats of learning 
scattered all* over the country, such as Gopamow, Khyrabad, 
Bilgram, Lucknow, Rampur, Jaunpur, Deobund, and other 
towns in what are called the United Provinces now. Some 
of these centres specialized in Logic and Metaphysics, others in 
Literature, others again in Divinity and Muslim Jurisprudence 
and so forth. To these Muslim seats of learning students flocked 
from all parts of India, Afghanistan and even Bokhara. The 
well-to-do residents of the towns thought it their religious duty 
to shelter these pilgrims of knowledge, each according to ttye 
accommodation at his disposal, and provide them with their daily 
bread, which was often nothing more than the barest sustenance. 
The life of hard study, privation and self -repression that they led 
stood them in good stead afterwards when they came to take 
their share in {he battle of life, and many attained to positions 
of eminence and renown. I have Had the honour of being ac- 
quainted in the old days with Hindoo and Muslim gentlemen o this 


type of whom any country might justly be proud men who owed 
their success in life solely to the strict discipline through which 
they had passed and to the thoroughness of their oriental educa- 
tion. Those days are I believe gone never to return. We live 
in a changed, perhaps in many respects, a better world. Our 
needs now are different. Still, I venture to maintain that a 
combination of modern European with our own old and venerable 
learning would be the most perfect, the ideal culture for an Indian ; 
just as profound Greek and Latin scholarship combined with 
modern learning was until lately the ideal culture in Europe, 
and is still held in high esteem. 

But long years, passed under the influence of the old examin- 
ing Universities, when cramming the contents of the so-called 
* Notes ' and ' Keys ' to text-books was everything, and the per- 
sonal influence and guidance of professors and teachers counted 
for nothing, have made us forget the esteem and honour in which 
a teacher was held in the old days. It has made us forget how 
proud we were to submit to his control even when his severity was 
carried to the verge of cruelty. We have forgotten how strenuous 
and self denying were the years which those of our countrymen 
who aspired to high erudition had to pass at the feat of renowned 
Pundits and Moulvies far away from their homes and their people. 
In one word we have ceased to appreciate the value of discipline 
and self-denial and the duty of submitting to the guidance of 
our teachers, while behaving towards them with the almost 
idolatrous reverence and respect enjoined on us by immemorial 
custom. We older people hear now and again with shame and 
regret of the outbreak of a rebellious spirit among students in 
colleges and schools in different parts of India, and we wonder in 
our own minds if there is going to be an end to all real education. 

The reason for such unfortunate occurrences is not far to seek. 
The growing laxity of home discipline is to some extent responsi- 
ble for it, but it is mostly due to racial prejudice combined with 
perverted ideas of liberty imbibed by our youths in their super- 
ficial contact with western civilization. In refusing, however, to 
submit to the rules of conduct laid down by their teachers, they 
forget how strict and imperious is the discipline of schools in Eng- 
land and still more in our own indigenous, national institutions. 
They forget that true liberty is as far removed from license as 
heaven from earth or virtue from vice, and is only to be attained 
by willing obedience to law written and unwritten the written law 
of the land we live in, and the unwritten law of honour and morality 
imposed on us by our conscience. The state of mind which 
enables us to submit cheerfully to these limitations when grown 
up, is the outcome of early training and discipline at home and 
in schools. But we must remember that the world is a much 
harder task-jmaster and those who rebel against* such discipline 
When young, have often to>pay much more galling penalties after- 
warjis and endure greater hardships than home or school 


discipline could impose on them. 

On these and other considerations I have arrived at certain 
conclusions which I now venture to submit for the approval or 
condemnation of my hearers. 

To begin with, children up to the age pf ten should, in my 
humble opinion, have no tasks assigned them yvhicii they m^st 
carry out whether they will it or no, under penalties of one kind 9$ 
another. Their brains should be allowed to lie fallow and left free 
to grow and develop in a healthy, natural way. During these 
tender years a good deal of useful information crfn be impacted 
to children orally, and without much exertion, if parents and 
teachers will only take the trouble. On the moral and religious 
side they should be taught the value of truth in a practical way 
so that nothing now or in later life will induce them to tell a lie. 
As lying is the root of all evil so is truthfulness the root of all 
good in a man, and the foundation of a high personal character. 
The principles and traditions of their national religion, whatever 
that may be, should be imparted to them together with stories 
and anecdotes of their prophets, saints and rishies, such as are to 
be found in all nationalities, and they should be enjoined faith- 
fully to perform all the simpler and more binding rites prescribed 
by their religion. On. the secular side they should be taught 
their mother tongue thoroughly and well. If only the proper 
method is employed, children can be induced to learn simple 
reading and writing in no time without resorting to processes of 
compulsion that have to be adopted in schools, maktabs and 
patshalas. The more elaborate and scholarly knowledge will come 
afterwards when the time arrives for school work. Physical train- 
ing should also go hand in hand with moral, religious and secular 
training. I attach the greatest importance to physical training 
because it helps to produce manliness and self-respect, and as 
a consequence, self-control, in later a^d maturer life. A young 
man who feels that he can defend himself against uncalled for 
assault or wanton insult, will always respect himself and ojth^ 
apd never lose his temper. 

Boys and girls who have been brought up in this way will 
learn English much quicker, and in a much shorter time, than 
those whp undergo the drudgery of school education from a very 
tender age, and will enjoy much better health. I would also urge 
all Indian youths to acquire a sound knowledge ol their own 
classics before they begin English. I have known young m$n 
who did so take their bachelor's degree in seven years instead oi 
fourteen or fifteen, and stand high in the First division in this as* 
well as in the two preliminary examinations. 

A scholarly familiarity with their classics, be it Sanskrit or. 
Arabic, gives all youths a perfect mastery over their verna,cq%& 
besides imparting to them their religious find spiritual Doctrines* 
at first hand, in all their original beauty and purity. 


My address., $uch as it is, will not be complete without a 
reference to the more recent events of importance in the history 
of the University. First and foremost of all I must recall the 
fapt that in May last the Honourable Sir John Wallis, Chief Justice 
of the High Court of Judicature, Madras, ceased to hold office its 
yice-Chancellor of the University after a tenure of eight years 
during which he directed the operations of the University with 
marked ability and sound judgment. He was at the helm Curing 
the whole period of transition from the old By-laws to the new 
Regulations to which I shall presently draw attention, and the 
University cofcld not have had a better or surer guide at this 
critical period of its history. He was succeeded by the Honour- 
able Sir P. S. Sivaswami Aiyar K. c. s. I., who has previously 
had intimate experience of University work for some years as a 
most respected and valued member of the Syndicate. To 
Sir Sivaswami belongs the distinction of being the only Indian Vice- 
Chancellor in the history of the University with the exception of 
Sir S. Subramanya Aiyar K. c. I. E., who held office for a few 
months in 1904. 

Nor must I forget to mention with regret the removal by death 
during the year of several well-known members of the Senate, 
such as Mr. C. Nagoji Rau, Mr. Appa Rau, who was in his time 
a recognized authority in Telugu language and literature, the 
Rev. J. Cooling, Mr. Ganapati Aiyar, Mr. Cook for many years 
Principal of the Central College, Bangalore, Sultan Muhi-ud-din 
Khan Bahadur, a retired Presidency Magistrate, and, last but not 
least of all, Mr. A. Subramanya Aiyar the distinguished Professor 
of Mental and Moral Science in the Presidency College and Chair- 
man of the Board of Studies in Mental and Moral science. 

The changes that have taken place on the recommendation, 
pf the University Commission appointed by Lord Curzon mark aji 
era in the history of this as well as other Indian Universities. 
I shall proceed now to give a brief sketch of these changes. In 
the year 1906, the University, newly constituted under the Unj- 
versities' Act 1904, was engaged in revising its old By-laws $nd 
drafting new Regulations to take their place. The old courses 
and examinations were still in existence : the colleges affiliated 
to the University had undergone the first regular inspection by 
the University, and were being advised and directed as to the 
steps to be taken in order to provide adequately for the new con- 
ditions. At the close of that year, 1906, the Government of 
Madras published the new regulations of the University. The 
.new courses of study were begun in the schools and colleges in the 
year 1909, the first Matriculation Examination being held under 
those Regulations in that year, the first Intermediate Examina- 
tion in Arts superseding the old First Arts Examination, in 1911^ 
an$ the higher examinations in correspondingly later years. 

These reforms aimed fit testing the intelligence of pupils in 
preference to mer$ memory and the exclusion of untrained private 


candidates from University examinations. A further reform in 
this direction was inaugurated in 1910, authorizing Principals of 
affiliated colleges to admit holders of completed School-Leaving 
Certificates under the various schemes in force in Southern India. 
This privilege, however, it has been found necessary to curtail, 
and a list of Certificate-holders from among whom alone such 
admissions may be made, is now to be published annually by the 

The old First Examination in Arts, called F. A., for short, has 
been abolished making room for the new Intermediate Examina- 
tion which is, indeed, now the first, instead of being the second 
sifting process applied by the University to the pupils admitted 
to Colleges under the new Regulations. The result has been that 
while during the last five years of the old F. A. Examination, the 
number of candidates was always under 2,700, the number of 
candidates for the Intermediate Examination which replaces the 
F. A. was over 4,600 this year. The truth probably is that while 
the old Matriculation examination frequently debarred a large 
number of suitable students from the higher courses, the new 
system of admission to colleges under the School-Leaving Certi- 
ficate scheme, has resulted in even a larger number of unfit candi- 
dates being aflmitted. It is however too early yet to pronounce 
this method of admission a failure. Let us hope that, in the hands 
of proper Inspectors and headmasters of schools, the scheme will 
come in time to adjust itself to the standard upheld by the Uni- 
versity and satisfy its requirements. 

During the last five years of the old F. A. Examination the 
minimum of passes was 680, and the maximum 1,087 ; while for 
the last five years of the Intermediate, the minimum was 686 and 
the maximum reached at the last examination, was as high as 
1,241 notwithstanding the fact that there were nearly 74 per cent 
of failures this year ! 

It is interesting to compare the total number of passes in the 
three Universities down to the year 1915. The figure for Cal- 
cutta is approximately 30,267 of whom 17,000 were B. A's., 3,050 
M. A's. 7,000 B. L's., and 1,715 graduates in Medicine and Surgery, 

The total for Bombay is approximately 13,402, of whom about 
7,584 were B. A's., 705 M. A's., about 2,289 LL. B's., 863 Civil 
Engineers, and about 1,537 graduates in Medicine and Surgery 
including 18 M. D's. 

The total number of passes for Madras was about 19,504, of 
whom 14,000 were B. A's., 1,200 graduates in Pedagogy, 3,100, 
B. L's., and 579 graduates in Medicine and Surgery. 

When we remember that the Calcutta University was for years 
the only chartered examining body licensed to confer degrees for 
the whole of Noijthern India including the Central Provinces, the 
Punjab, the North Western Provinces, of 'Agra and*0udh, the 
Provinces of Bengal, Behar and Orissa, beside^ the large province 


of Burma outside Indian boundaries, the position occupied by 
Madras in this comparison will be easily understood, and it will 
be seen that the figure 19,504 of Madras does not compare un- 
favourably with the 80,267 of Calcutta. 

In the higher examinations there have been no very radical 
changes, except that the students are now allowed to specialize 
earlier than before and the study of oriental classics on western 
lines is encouraged which, every right-thinking man will grant, 
is a move in the right direction. 

In the year 1910 the University finally adopted Regulations 
which had been long under consideration instituting courses and 
examinations in Sanskrit, Persian and Arabic, entitling the suc- 
cessful candidates to oriental titles of fairly high standing. So 
far however this laudable scheme for the encouragement of orient- 
al scholarship has been a failure, especially among the Muslim 
inhabitants of this Presidency, 

Another very important step in advance is the appointment 
of University Professors. Three such appointments have been 
made up-to-date Professor of Indian Economics, Professor of 
Indian History and Archaeology and Professor of Comparative 
Philology with special reference to Sanskrit. A ..fourth profes- 
sorship, that of Dravidian Philology, has yet to be filled up. 

These professorships will no doubt prove a great help to those 
engaged in post-graduate courses, and will encourage self-study 
and research. 

All these reforms however are mainly academical. They mark, 
no doubt, a considerable step in advance, and will serve to increase 
the number of students who receive the hall-mark of the Univer- 
sity every year, and very probably that hall-mark will be of 
greater intrinsic value than before. But does this satisfy all our 
needs ? I am afraid many will answer this question in the 
negative, since the one item most important to the growth of a 
healthy mind is altogether left out of practical consideration I 
mean the personal influence of teachers and the environment and 
atmosphere in which students spend their undergraduate days, j 
consider these of more importance than mere academical success 
in the growth and upward advance of a people. And these 
advantages can only be secured by the establishment of a number 
of properly equipped residential Universities on the model of the 
Universities of Oxford and Cambridge of the old days. To allay 
the fears of those who think such Universities would limit the 
range of higher education in India, let the present Universities 
continue to exist and do their work, they cannot harm the others 
or interfere with their success. 

The Hindoos have inaugurated a University of their own under 
the happiest auspices at their ancient seat of learning and their 
most sacrecl city, Berfares. We all hope and trust that the Hindoo 
University will be a signal success and remedy some of the older 


Universities foUhded by Government. Mysorfe, whidh Aftiorig 
Indian principalities takes the lead in every direction, has 
established a local University which promises well. Other enlight- 
ened Indian States will, no doubt, follow the lead of Mysore in 
course of time. Let us hope that the long talked of Muslim 
University at Aligarh will sooner or later come into existence. 
These are promising signs of the times and encourage one to hope 
that the country will before long be strewn with residential Univer- 
sities which will, in course of time, not far distant, rmse India to 
the level of the leading nations of the world. But, this hope will 
only be realized if our indigenous Universities will set up a high 
standard of culture and scholarship and resist the temptation 
of spreading a spurious education by cheapening their degrees. 

And now Ladies and Gentlemen, with your kind permission 
I will say a few words regarding a topic which, at this moment, 
engrosses the anxious attention of every thinking man or woman 
all over the world. I mean the life and death struggle that has 
been going on for the last two years in Europe. You will per- 
haps ask : what has education to do with the War ? I hold that 
education has everything to do with it. The kind of education 
dispensed in all civilized countries except one, the education to 
which we are "accustomed in India, the education imparted in 
schools and colleges and Universities in England, France, America 
and other civilized countries teaches mankind, above all things, 
the value of Truth, Justice, Mercy, personal and national freedom, 
in short all the characteristics which distinguish us from wild 
beasts. In Germany however it has a different function. There 
it teaches men to set at naught these moral values and aim solely 
and at whatever cost, at the acquisition of power the summum 
bonum of all human endeavours. This astounding doctrine which 
had its birth in the brain of Nietzsche, has permeated all Germany ; 
and great German leaders like Bernhardi, Trietzsche and others 
are its ardent and unscrupulous adherents. The civil population 
has, as a result, been reduced to the condition of moral serfdom, 
and any one who dares to raise his vioce in protest against the 
violation of moral law has to face degradation and death. We 
thus see how, saturated with such an atrocious doctrine, the 
Gertoans have in this war trampled under foot all obligations, 
moral and national, which the world was accustomed to hold 
sacred. We see how, in the pursuit of their long cherished ambi- 
tion of dominating Europe, and securing the command of sea and 
land all over the world, they have not scrupled to commit the most 
inhuman atrocities on innocent men, women and children. They 
have invented endless lies whenever it suited their purpose. They 
have destroyed undefended towns and places of worship, burnt 
valuable libraries and famous works of art, and have driven 
their coach and four through international compacts to which 
they were themselves solemnly pledged. The atrocities of the 
Wild hordes of Tartars, under Hulaku Khan and others, were as 
nothing compared with the 4 e liberate crimes 'committed in tfee 


name of civilization by those who, of all people in the world, 
were once supposed to have reached the highest pinnacle of cul- 
ture and refinement. 

Now I beg my countrymen, in all seriousness, to think and 
realize what would be the fate of our coast towns and cities from 
Karachi to Calcutta, our trade and commerce, our exports and 
imports, if the British Navy was not strong enough to prevent 
German Dreadnoughts, destroyers and submarines entering our 
seas and doing their will without let or hindrance, let alone the 
chance of theip invading the interior, and carrying fire and sword 
throughout our peaceful and prosperous country. 

We have not forgotten what havoc one solitary Emden was 
able to commit among our shipping. Why, even this great town, 
Madras, if I am not mistaken, still retains evidences of the damage 
that could be done by a single adventurer of that type. What 
then if some dozen Emdens were let loose on our waters ? If, 
therefore, there is anything like gratitude in the world, in our 
world, should we not be grateful for the security we enjoy ? And 
if we realize the magnitude and importance of this boon, is it 
not our duty, I say, the duty of each one of us, to give up for a 
short time some of the luxuries he enjoys and contribute volun- 
tarily and without compulsion anything he can spare towards the 
expenses of the navy ? I am not insisting now on the sentiment 
of loyalty or our duty to the State : of these let each one form his 
own estimate and follow any line of conduct his conscience may 
dictate. I am only concerned at the present moment with the 
bounden duty, the noble duty of gratitude, gratitude for being 
saved from overwhelming disaster such as would inevitably 
overtake us but for the protection afforded by a powerful Navy 
towards the up-keep of which our country contributes little or 
nothing at all. I do not deny, nay, I repeat it with pride, that 
India has played a noble part in coming to the help of Great 
Britain in this unjust war ; and even this portion of India, I 
mean Madras, has contributed liberally towards the up-keep 
of a Hospital Ship and other expenses. I only say this is not 
enough. It may not be out of place to remind those for whom 
this appeal is intended that the cost of the war is said to be some- 
thing like six million pounds sterling per diem, in other words 
nine crores of rupees in British currency, and that the approximate 
cost of the Navy before the war was nearly sixty million pounds 
per annum. Australia, New Zealand, Canada and even the small 
colonies of Hongkong and Strait Settlements have raised large 
sums of money to help in this war, while we have only raised 
some four or five millions sterling, and that not as a War Loan but 
for domestic purposes. I will say no more gentlemen, but will 
leave it to your own good sense and good feeling to deal with the 

matter as you like. 

Not to trespass any longer on the patience of my hearers I 
wfll now close my discourse with a few words of advice to the 


fortunate young men who have received the hall-mark of the 
University today. 

My young friends ! Remember that you are leaving the Uni- 
versity now to seek admission into another and a wider and 
more strenuous University, far less indulgent to faults and fail- 
ings, and far more prompt to enforce discipline on all who venture 
to enter its precincts. But if you will remember the solemn 
promises you have made today and endeavour throughout your 
lives to carry them out, you shall have nothing to fear. What- 
ever your sphere of life, be it by your own choice or by the force 
of circumstances, if you have courage and manliness at your 
back, if you have " Self-reverence, Self-knowledge, Self-control '- 
for your guides, all will be well with you. Remember God and 
do your duty without fear or favour. What is enforced as an 
obligation on the true monotheist, the firm believer in one God, 
in the following beautiful Persian verses is intended to apply to 
all the moral obligations of humanity. 

\J" r* n 

J X3 ~ jA> 5 W> 

which translated freely means ' The firm believer in 
one God whether you pour streams of gold at his feet or hold a 
naked Indian sword over his head, nothing shall either tempt 
or intimidate him. Such is the sole dictate of firm belief in one 

The fields of activity open to you all are many and various, 
but let it be throughout life your endeavour to raise yourselves 
and those under your influence to a higher and ever higher level 
as long as you live. Remember and make your own the stirring 
words of an American Poet : 

Build thee more stately mansions, O my soul, 

As the swift seasons roll 1 

Leave thy low-vaulted past. 
Let each new temple, nobler than the last, 
Shut thee from heaven by a dome more vast ; 

Till thou at length art free, 
Leaving thy out-grown shell by life's unresting sea. 

A liberal education such as the University has imparted to 
you naturally gives rise to many political aspirations among* 
others, for which no one can blame you. But do not waste your 
own time and that of others in crying for the moon. All political 
development is gradual and evolutionary, and the ultimate goal, 
no doubt, is Self-Government in some form or other for us Self- 
Go vernment on colonial lines. In thecoufse of histcSrical evolu-. 
tion the time will come when our rulers will not be able, in all 


fairness and justice, to withhold this boon from us. But it is, 
in my humble opinion, an utter waste of time and energy to agitate 
for it when a hundred and one obstacles, arising out of our own 
deficiencies, place it outside the sphere of practical politics. The 
time and energy so wasted would be much better employed if 
each generation of educated youths amongst us were to devote 
themselves heart and soul to the one task of endeavouring to 
bring that much coveted prize nearer our grasp. The moral, 
intellectual and social level not of a few fortunate individuals, but 
of the great ipajority, if not the entire nation, must be raised 
higher and higher until the goal is brought within our ken. t>n- 
til that fortunate day arrives, it is futile to agitate and clamour, 
and waste time and money over such hopeless pursuits. I admit 
that, barring such waste, no real harm is done, at any rate in 
your part of India, by the agitation which, after all, only gives 
vent to the pent-up energies of a few enthusiastic souls : but 
unfortunately many of your youths are tempted to take part in 
it whose time and energies would be better employed in fitting 
themselves for the boon some day instead of joining their elders 
in clamouring for it now. 

Farewell my young Friends ! and God be with you. Be 
true to yourselves, to your king and country, and never forget the 
obligations which the solemn ceremonies of this important day 
impose on you for life. Again farewell. 


Uncertain Harmonies 

There is a charm that silence wields 

In sylvan solitudes, 

Where twilight dwells enthroned in leafy bowers, 
And blossoms drop like dew in golden showers, 
r A music that preludes 
Sweet songs, perchance rehearsed in fair Elysian fields. 

By far off sweeps of yonder stream 

And reaches verdurous, 
Where trees foregather round a pool embayed, 
While at their feet is oft a breeze delayed 

For frolics venturous 
In the cool depth below where shadows lie and dream. 

Or in some Himalayan grove 

Of redolent deodar, 

And gnarled oak and rhododendron red, 
With tawny moss and fern well garmented, 

While marshalled not afar 
Watch veteran peaks of snow that seem to live and mov< 

And on the velvet, piled beneath 

By many an autumn's spoil. 
Empurpled shadows glancing to and fro 
Hold in the glinting sun a fairy show, 

Wherein a living coil 
Of teeming gems is disentangled on the heath. 

Here haply once a Rishi dwelt 

Favoured of mighty Brahm, 
Close comrade long of rock, and snow and storm, 
Familiar friend of every forest form, 

In contemplation calm 
Of God's pervading sense in all he saw or felt. 

And haply many an autumn night 

Ere winter storms began, 
Behind yon copse he watched the eastern skies, 
And darkling saw the lambent planet ijse, 

Beheld her fingers wan 
Transfuse a dismal world with circumambient light. 


Or where in faint remembrance of 

A half forgotten dream, 

With borrowed blooms and skill of light and shade 
Man has, perchance, a feigned Eden made 

By some still lake or stream, 
Where spring may dwell a passing day and waste his love. 

Here in such spots of God's fair earth 

Away from jarring strife, ^ 

Some favoured soul, though prisoned, still may hear 

Faint far off echoes of another sphere 
Where spirits sing of life 

Informed with love divine of pure celestial birth. 

As erst the Broad -browed Grecian knew ; 

Of he that heard the stars 
Sing like an angel, in their orbits dim 
" Still quiring to the young-eyed cherubim;" 

Or the blind bard of Mars ; 
Or Nature's pontiff priest who wore the laurelled brow. 

These heard it these and other seers 

And singers of all time, 
And steeped their souls in harmony divine, 
And drinking deep of that ethereal wine 

Broke forth in strains sublime 
Of prayer or praise or love to bless unending years. 

It hath uncertain harmonies 

Tuned to the listner's mood ; 
Now sad as is the sight of dying wave, 
And now with joy's omnipotence to save 

Despairing souls that brood 
In darkening hours of life o'er Fate's funereal seas. 


April in Upper India 

The west wind moaned among the trees, 

The sad leaves shook and fell, 
The distant murmur of the bees 
Came faintly down the dell. 
Love lay among his wasted flowers ; 

Love sighed and sang " the day is long " 
Time laughed and would not hear the song. 

The dapple shadow of the leaves 

Lay trembling on the grass ; 
Upon the yellow stacked sheaves 

There watched nor lad nor lass. 
Love strayed among his fallen bowers ; 

Love moaned and sang " the day is long ;" 
Time laughed and would not hear the song. 


Lazily sped the long hot day, 

The dust was in the wind ; 
Beyond, the burning breath of May ; 

The sweets of March behind : 
Love grew aweary of the hours ; 

Love pined and sang " the day is long ;" 
Time laughed and would not hear the song. 

The fierce sun shimmered on the land, 

The birds their nests forsook ; 
The hot wind quivered on the sand 

That marged the dying brook. 
Love languished vainly for his mate ; I 

Love sighed and sang ** the day is long ; f * 
Time laughed and would not hear the song. 


His mate came with the brief springtide, 

With springtide she was gone, 
His mate came home when far and wide 

The sweets of March were strewn ; 
But now the land lay desolate ; 

Love moaned and sang " the day is long ;" 
Time laughed and would not hear the song 

Fair Jamuna 1 thy limpid plain 

Where laved the village maids 
Of Brij (whose graments once their swain 

Purloined) lay in braids 
Of glist'ning sand, and feath'ry reeds ; 

Love sighed and sang " the day is long ;" 
Time laughed and would not hear the song. 

The /a/a* stalks lay sere and wan, 

And woeful blew the breeze ; 
And bloomless drooped the nafarmanrf 

And cheerless stood the trees. 
Love sickened with the day's long pains ; 

Love sang " the day is very long ;" 
Time laughed and would not hear the song. 

* Poppy f Larkspur 


Old Year 

Year ! old year ! fast fading year ! 

Hast thou no word to say, no dying word, 

Between the gloaming and the gloom 

Of thy sad doom ? 

Or is the poor, frail, failing voice unheard, 

Unseen the wan, weak tear ? 

Year ! old year ! 

Year ! old year ! fast fading year ! 

Eternity was once in fierce travail, 

And Fate of all things most forlorn 

Ere time was born : 

Did not her primal agonised wail 

Pierce thine unborn ear ? 

Year ! old year ! 

Year ! old year ! fast fading year ! 

When from the shoreless sea rolled one more wave 

World-ward, and the Lord knew'twas thou, 

Upon thy brow, 

Scrawled He the gaunt old legend of the grave, 

In foam-flakes dank and drear ? 

Year ! old year ! 

Year ! old year ! fast fading year ! 

Was thy last sun riot pale for pity's sake 

Or love's ? Nay ! gliding otherwhere, 

O'er marsh or mere, 

Glanced he not back upon his wasteful wake, 

Or shed a wistful tear ? 

Year ! old year ! 

Year ! old year ! poor, lost old year ! 

Thy knell is tolling now ; the tale is told 

Of thy brief days ; thy life is done 

With scarce goal won : 

Time claims his dead, and lays thee stark and cold 

Upon his misty bier, 

Year !old year 1 


Year ! old year ! poor dead old year ! 

Thy face was comely once, thy voice once sweet. 

To hear, and once athwart thy brow, 

Not dark as now, 

Shone glow-worm gleams of hope, some flashes fleet 

Of joy that came not near ! 

Year ! old year ! 

Nay, what was thy message, year ? 

Of old leaves withered, or of new loves gone ? 

Of joy that will not tarry long ? 

Or of sweet song 

Silenced ere half the singing time is done ? 

Or of dead hope and sere ? 

Year ! old year ! 

Yea, thy fruit, thou sped old year, 

Was dead-sea fruit sprung of salt ooze, and fed 

Oij bitter gall and bitt'rer rue ; 

Whereof the hue 

Was death ; whereof the taste was molten lead, 

Cold ash, or frozen tear. 

Year ! old year ! 


Butterfly and Moth 

A pansy-pinioned butterfly, 
Flitting from rose to mignonette, 
Espied a moth on wings to hie 
To where an open casement met 
The dusking day with timid light, 
That ev'ry minute grew more bright. 

Said butterfly in moth in jest, 
44 What wings you, cousin, on your way ? 
The sun is all but gone to rest : 
They tarry now who tarry may, 
For flowers here are sweet to see, 
And sweeter still for company." 

But here the busy trifler spied, 

Ere half his jesting speech was done, . 

A tall white lily by the side 

Of a steep bank that kissed the sun ; 

And flitted forth incontinent, 

On ever-changing pleasure bent. 

The moth scarce seemed to heed the song, 
But sped demurely on his way, 
As one impelled by purpose strong 
Whom way-side trifles might not stay ; 
Till past the curtained casement frame, 
With deathless love he fed the flame. 

But ere his life was half consumed, 
I seemed to hear some murmuring, 
As of a soul to silence doomed 
(Though Death for him was reft of sting) 
Who still would voice his inmost pain, 
And would not make his passion vain. 

That sweet sad wail no mortal ear, 
Though kindred passion give it name, 
May in the body ever hear, 
For singeing wing and hissing frame 
Burnt-offerings of steadfast love 
On the high altar reared above. 


With inward sense he sees the light, 
He feels it in his inmost soul : 
He finds it fair, he knows it bright : 
He seeks it for his destined goal : 
Welcome to him the chastening fire, 
For love is one with love's desire. 

Shall love at love's hand seek for good 
Alone soft sun-shine and sweet shade ; 
And way-side blooms ; and blithe abode 
In yonder smiling valley-glade ; 
Smooth paths that will caress the feet ; 
Sweet wines to drink, sweet food to eat ? 

Shall love at love's hand wince or cry, 
If e'er frosts sting, or hot suns smite ; 
And bitter tears that bite the eye 
Well up unbid ; and aches that write 
Strange wrinkles on the anguished heart, 
Swart galley-marks that ne'er depart ? 

Go to ! thy creed is wearisome. 

Nay ! may not love once smite for love ? 

Is travail vain ? Do trials come 

In wrath alone ? Nay ! up above, 

Thy fire and light, thy wrath and ruth, 

Are witnesses of one same truth. 

Say which slays soonest light or fire, 
The sun speeds swiftest or the day ? 
Why needs the fearless heart enquire 
If wrath may quicken, ruth may slay, 
When faith and hope are given to love, 
And all consecrated above ? 

A voice calls ! and the exiled soul 
Rejoicing, answers back ** I come !** 
What boots it how the goal is won, 
The way was long and wearisome, 
The rvay was long, and bleak and strait, 
And 'twas an agony to wait. 


An unsung Idyll in his life, 
The little fragile moth reveals, 
The primal lay of mortal strife 
To win the light that death conceals 
And dying thus he leaves behind, 
A burning message for his kind. 



! sweet was love and sweet desire, 
And love's young blood was all a-fire, 
And is knew not the dread to be, 
When last my love came home to me. 

The sun was sifted mellow in 
The casement starred with jessamine,' 
And on the glass-pane buzzed the bee, 
When last my love came home to me. 

And roses red as martyr-wound, 
Were on the trellis-shed festooned ; 
Blue-bells hung from every tree, 
When last my love came home to me. 

And larkspurs on the way-side grew, 
And poppies pearled with silver dew, 
Pink passions made them flowers three, 
When last my love came home to me. 

1 took from love close kisses three, 
One kiss for love and one for thee, 
And one for way-side company, 
When last rny love came home to me. 

I took from love close kisses seven, 
Some were for Hell, and some for Heaven, 
And some for the thing that was to be, 
When last my love came home to me. 


Love's Sadness 

There is in love a gentle sadness 
Which only lovers know, 
A sorrow much akin to gladness 
In its supernal glow. 

True love is truly complemental 
Completing soul to soul, 
And so the sepal and the petal 
Of flowers make the whole. 

But still in giving all it giveth 
The heart is not content, 
For love's a trade that ever thriveth 
On lavish gifts intent. 

Beside the meed of love it iieedeth, 
Its own great gifts untold 
The heart that loveth no more heedeth 
Than dross to purest gold. 

It giveth all its wealth of feeling, 
All that it has and more, 
Never stinting, naught concealing, 
Yet oweth as before. 

Thereof is born a gentle sadness 
Not deepened into pain, 
A sorrow much akin to gladness 
Like sunshine blurred with rain. 



Linger, linger, happy hour 
When my love is nigh, 
When my love is far away 
Fly ! fly 1 

When my love is in my arms 
Sing merrily lark and thrush, 
But when in the arms of sleep 
Hush ! Hush ! 

Spring and sunshine fill my days 
When my love is near, 
When my love is gone away 
Winter drear. 

Blithe my heart in shine and shower 
As the day is long, 
When her smile I see and hear 
Her song. 

Live we while our lives are ours, 
Love we while we may, 
Life to death, my sweet ! is but 
A day. 

Live no laughless day, my love ! 
Live no loveless hour, 
Weep no tears in shine, my love ! 
Or shower. 



Even as tKe flowers are, so art thou, 

Bright and sweet and joyous, 
Maiden of the sunny brow ! 

Even as the morn is, so art thou, 

Fresh is the virgin dew 
Upon thy golden brow. 

Even as the stars are, so art thou, 

The poetry of heaven is 
Under thy arched brow. 

Even as the soul is, so art thou, 

And love and life and light 
Are circled round thy brow. 

Green bank of grass and maiden hair 

Wound round a* purling brook 
In summer, 'tis passing fair : 

Where roses climb half way 

To trellised jessamine, 
Soothing the sultry day ; 

And showered blooms of Vakul* spread 

Beneath, and yellow Champa,} 
Blithe Spring's own bridal bed, 

Tis ever sweet ; but sweeter thou 

And fairer, aye, and rarer, 
Maiden of the golden brow ! 

Do I love thee ? Ask not again : 

The stars above thee answer yes, 
And the flowerful plain. 

1 Mimusops Klengi (Hindi Naulsiri). f Michelia Champaca. 



I met love walking on the heath 


His foot was swart with clotted gore 

From stinging weeds beneath : 

And walking he made moan, 

Ah me ! 

And when he clomb upon the hill 


The wild wind smote him on the mouth, 

And his sore heart was chill. 

He was alone, alone, 

Ah me ! 

He stood and looked at the cold, cold sea 


The sea will kiss the rock, he said, 

But it will kiss not me. 

Alas ! so fair, so far I 

Ah me ! 

At nightfall when he groped about 

Wearily ! 

The shingle bruised his hand and knee : 

And in his heart was doubt, 

And in the heaven no star, 

Ah me ! 


A Dream of Youth 

Methought I dreamt a dream, 
Delicious, sense-enthralling, 

That one, forsooth may deem 

Was come of Heaven's own calling* 

The joys of life were there, 

Such joys as never pall, 
And all of earth of air 

Seemed beautiful withal. 

The joy that beamed within me 

Shone mirrored all about, 
And my notes of ccstacy 

Were echoed with a shout. 

Each phase of smiling nature 

To me was full of glee : 
With every living creature 

My heart had sympathy. 

Each tiny little flower 

In garden, sward or heath, 

Aye ! every blade of clover 

With nought but joy did breathe. 

In every rustic maiden 

I saw a thousand charms, 
With homely virtues laden 

Worthy my loving arms. 

And nought of vice or failing 
Peopled my vision world ; 

No sorrow, no bewailing 
Was ever seen or heard. 

And " always to be blessed " 

Was not the lot of man, 
For blessing I confessed 

O'erflowed our mortal span. 

In such a world methought 
I Iwed and had my being, 

Where faith was sold nor bought. 
Where seeing was believing. 


And then there came a waking 
My happy dream was gone ; 

The shadows of my making 
All vanished one by one. 

Alas ! it was no dream 

But stern reality, 
The type of what I deem 

Youth's ideality* 

On lightning wings it came 

On lightning wings 'twas gone 

Youth is an empty name 
The blushes of a dawn. 



Dear friend ! if we are spared a while 
To wander in this vale of tears, 

We'll meet again and mend the chain 
Though snapped in twain by sundering years, 
Once more the faded flower will smile, 
The sun will haply shine again. 

llut if the Fates untoward prove, 
And if your friend in exile die, 
Pray hold excused the sorrow bruised 
That far from you so cold will lie. 
Ah me ! how many a longing love 
Lies cold in death, its fruits refused. 


Beata Victoria 

Mother of men ! nay by what sweeter name 
Can we invoke thee in our prayer ? For Fame 
Is but a giftless almoner of thine, 
Until thou fill his hand with gifts divine, 
Great Mother Empress Queen 1 

Supreme of woman-kind, supreme in all 

Thy sex's highest sanctities ! No call 

Of Queenly duty light or heavy-laid 

Might find thy dauntless woman's heart afraid, 

Great Mother Empress Queen ! 

All gifts were thine all trials too that chasten, 
Uplift, ennoble, for none might stay or hasten 
God's hand : thine too all homely joys, and glories 
Of war or peace that live in deathless stories, 
Great Mother Empress Queen ! 

Thy triumphs are all merciful : not as 

Imperial Rome, oft flaunting to the gaze 

Of crowds debauched with godless sights and games, 

A captive nation's ills and cruel shames, 

Great Mother Empress Queen ! 

Thy casket held far other gifts than erst 
Pandora's. Hers of lurid fire accurst, 
But thine, Victoria ! came on angel wings 
Blazoned with Heaven's own radiant quarterings, 
Great Mother Empress Queen ! 

Which of thy gifts was highest none may know : 
But surely Heaven's foreknowledge would bestow 
Fortitude first for hours of straitest trial, 
Most nobly borne in lifelong self-denial, 
Great Mother-*-Empress Queen ! 

Wisdom came next with balanced self-control 
Controlling worlds regenerate. Thy soul 
Is law to souls, thy mind to other minds, 
And so thy rule a mighty empire binds, 
Great Mother Empress Queen ! 

When alien lands, not alien now, were given, 
Great realms for which great kings had striven, 
He gave thee Clemency an added grace, 
With equal love Who loveth every race, 
Great Mother Empress Queen ! 

Thy lieges, legions in this land and sea 
Swayed by the sun in fealty to thee, 
Turn them for help and succour to the west 
Where faith and hope at last have found a rest, 
Great Mother Empress Queen ! 

Oh t that my country could behold thy face 
And carved brow, wherein is queenly grace 
Woven with weft of many-tangled care, 
Pale with high thought, but kind and debonair. 
Great Mother Empress Queen ! 

Once stood I in thy presence, even I 
Thy bondman, and beheld thy majesty ;, 
Bent my knee in service ; heard thee speak 
Kindly accents, and spoke bajek in rev'rence meek, 
Great Mother Empress Queen ! 

Oh ! may thy life be long for us, great one I 
And when in God's own time thy work is done, 
Then may thy many-dowered mantle fall 
From son to gifted son in slow recall, 
Great Mother Empress Queen ! 


In Memoriam 

O. K. L. 

OBIIT. 16-8-94 

Weep, weep poor child t poor stricken child ! 
Thine eyes have need of welling tears ; 
Brief months have been for thee as years : 
He sleeps who late had fondly smiled, ' 

Gazed fondly at thy up-turned face, 
To read the welcome in thine eyes 
Caerulean as our summer skies, 
And pure as is a thing of grace. 

Aye, sleeps : and he will wake no more : 
But summer skies will still be clear : 
And when the rain comes in mid-year, 
Brooks will run and torrents roar : 

Between the tombstones grass will grow, 
Flowers in fields and thriving corn ; 
And trees late of their brav'ry shorn 
By autumn, make a braver show : 

Many a moon will wax and wane, 
And thou wilt mark her fickle race ; 
But he that sleeps with tranquil face, 
Will not, can not wake again. 

Call him fond names by love held dear ; 
Put thy heart's passion in thine eyes : 
Alas ! the stricken cannot rise ; 
He will not see, he will not hear. 

What were his days that they should fail ? 
What was thy love it should haste 
A dainty garden all laid waste 
By sudden blast of sleet and hail. 

A lily in the valley grew, 
A pure white lily tall and fair 
A gem that grows not everywhere ;. 
A ray that takes not every hue. 


A little lamb of &pecktess white 
Marked by the shepherd for his own, 
And petted when the day was done, 
A lamb that might be lamb or sprite. 

These were but yesterday* Today 
I see the lily pale and sere, 
I see and weep a silent tear. 
For grief that will not pass away. 

Was it a wolf that scared the lamb 
A grim, grey wolf with hungry maw ? 
The lamb lies bleeding on the straw, 

Between the stricken sire and dam. 

* * * 

One holds the world is all askew : 
One that the fittest will survive, 
None other : one that we who live 

Will die. Oh God ! If these be true. 

* * * 

Mark yonder pile of built up fire : 
Nay, stray not near it as you go ; 
No living thing may brook its glow, 
Consuming as a funeral pyre. 

A little while, and fingers deft 
With toil and tools of simple make 
From out the flames a crucible take, 
And lo ! 'tis gold that fills the reft : 

Aye, yellow gold, but chastened much ; 
Gold free of dross or base alloy, 
Purged by a fire that might destroy 

An element of flimsier touch. 

* * * 

Not vainly was the human soul 
Made kin to sorrow from its birth, 
That so its elemental worth 
Be chastened for the Heavenly goal. 

Is not God's pity sweet to have 
And sweet to hold t If this be so, 
Then toe is sorrow sweet to know, 
Sweet for the spirit that is brave. 


Out of the fire thy soul may rise 
God-helped to purer, holier life ; 
And memory of a by-gone strife 
Be held a portion and a prize. 

God's cunning hand we cannot tell : 
He has a salve for broken hearts ; 
And though the wounded surface smarts 
In His own way He makes it well. 

Peace, then my child I Nay wipe thy tears 
Listen to the Healer's voice aloft : 
He speaks in accents tender-soft : 
Listen, for he that hearkens hears. 


In Memoriam* 


The sun is murky in mine eyes, 
And in the stars at night 
I seem to see no answering light, 
I find no solace in the skies. 

And though in yonder garden close 
Cool March is lavish of his gifts, 
He cannot fill the gaping rifts 
Of grief with mignonette and rose. 

March is the year's great almoner, 
And pours abroad with stintless hand 
His largess over field and strand 
And valley-glade and mountain-spur. 

But not for me his healing grace 
Or quick 'ning power, not for me 
His lavish eleemosyn'ry, 
His genial warmth or kindly face. 


To me his breath is arctic cold 
And in his gorgeous mantles' glow 
I only see the garb of woe, 
I see no glitter in his gold : 

I see no flower in his wake 

But poppy white and immortelle, 

I only hear a dying knell 

Where bells are ringing for his sake. 

The Koel with a tireless throat 
Sends forth his call from copse and tree 
To swell the season's minstrelsy ; 
But I who once did love his note, 

Welcomed this herald of our spring, 
I take no pleasure in his song 
Who seems to mock me all along 
With his persistent twittering. 

'Written on tht d eath of Sir Say y id Ahmad of Aligarh. 



The reaper reaps the yellow corn, 
And fruit that weighs the laden bough 
Hanging in golden clusters now, 
Mellowed will fall to-morrow's morn 

To greet the early-rising maid ; 
And on its luscious flesh will meet 
Lips that are haply full as sweet, 
Of other lips as unafraid. 

The golden grain is gathered in ; 
The day is yellow with the gleam 
Of russet straw, and on the stream 
The harvest smell lies soft and clean. 

And fruit in orchards weighs no more 
Recumbent boughs, but rosy lips 
And hands to swelling finger tips 
Are purple with the life it bore. 


Thus corn and fruit ; but in their seed 
Lies potency to recreate 
With cycling seasons soon or late 
In closed grange or open mead 

Of its own kind a hundred-fold ; 
And ever as year follows year 
The corn will ripen in the ear 
And fruit will follow fruit untold. 

For Nature's wealth is so conserved 
That, as the seasons come and go, 
In every lack and overflow 
The balance just is still preserved. 

She orders in her lordly way 
That, present failure be a pledge 
Of past or future surplusage, 
To prove the justice of her sway. 



But man, alas t man comes and goes 

We know not whence, we know not where. 

We only know that in the air 

His last frail breath expiring flows : 

We only know that earth to earth 
His cherished lineaments return : 
We only know from grave or urn 
No response comes of grief or mirth ; 

No counsel for the day of fear ; 
No fillip for the heart that fails ; 
No undertone that still avails, 
As erst, for solace or for cheer. 

The hand, that for caress or care 
Was once so apt, lies cold in death, 
And in the bosom is no breath 
For high resolve to do or dare. 


Death plies his busy scythe unkind 
Regardless of the hour of day, 
And all the swathe is swept away 
Nor left the faintest trace behind. 

The soul will flit to other spheres 
All heedless of its shell of clay 
A shell fore-doomed to swift decay 
And freely mingle with its peers. 

The soul has neither kin or kith. 
It leaves nor son nor seed behind, 
Lone as a mountain peak enshrined 
Or consecrated monolith. 

Aeons may pass, the world wax wise 
Or foolish, but for loss or gain 
Time of the lost one will remain 
Orphaned until the dead arise. 


We think our thoughts but all alone ; 
We view the world but none the same ; 
We are impelled for praise or blame 
Each by an impulse of his own. 

We worship or deny our god 
Each in his way but none alike ; 
The tangled roots of thought we strike 
Are bedded in a diff 'rent sod. 

The streams of life run side by side 
In countless floods, yet every stream 
Preserves its native hue and gleam, 
Its shoals and depths, its time and tide. 

Not e'en in death alike we stand : 
Some drop amid the busy throng 
Like autumn fruitage mellowed long, 
While some are wrenched with ruthless har 

Green from the bough, ere summer glows 
Have swelled their luscious flesh with juice 
Like as the southern oak or spruce 
Might hope to thrive in polar snows. 


One gift alone is given us here 

To leave the heritage of our thought, 

To leave the work our hands have wroughl 

As deathless heirlooms at the bier. 

These will bear fruit of which the seed 
Self-sown in furrows new or old 
Will yield a harvest manifold 
Of good or ill in thought or deed, 

And be a blessing or a curse 
To years and ages yet unborn, 
Thus passing on their love or scorii 
Before the entrance of their hearse. 


Part IL 


Revered friend ! I lay this wreath 
Of way-side blossoms on your grave, 
Gathered by hands unskilled to save 
The upland perfume of their heath. 

I lay it on your grave and pause 
For an approving look or smile, 
Or grip of hand that rests awhile 
On mine in silence of applause ? 

The look and smile have had their doom, 
Like glints of sunshine on a bay 
That sweeping mists might wipe away 
And leave the world in sullen gloom. 

The hand is gripped in grimmer hand,* 

And for disciples old or young 

For ever silent is the tongue 

That once could counsel or command. 

The lines of meditation bold 
That furrowed deep that massive brow 
Alas ! are furrowed deeper now 
Into the ooze of slimy mould. 

The soul that looked through thoughtful eyes- 
The self-forgetting sleepless soul 
That ever sought some lofty goal 
Is surely now in Paradise. 


When we foregathered in the fall 
Of that his last completed year, 
None could have guessed the end so near 
Who heard him in the Council hall 

Time sits not lighter on a rock 
Than sat his four score years on him : 
The wine pot yet had touched the brim : 
hand not yet gone round the clock. 


Surely, said I, another Yule 
And yet another God will spare 
And keep him in his kindly care, 
Spare his servant yet to rule 

The counsels of a sinking race : 
I said : That steady hand and voice 
And undimmed eye will yet rejoice 
In life, nor sink to death apace. 

I said : The work is incomplete ! 
The arch still lacks the coping stone ; 
We see the basement walls alone, 
Will they not crumble at our feet ? 

It needs the Master's hand, I said, 
His skill of hand and watchful eye 
To crown it as the moments fly 
With due success ere life be sped. 


Little knew It' was all but sped, 
That ere the turning tide of March 
Was spent, adown would fall the arch 
Which held the bed-rock to its bed. 

But he knew well the end was nigh 
Who long had watched its slow approach, 
Had left it day by day encroach 
Content to wait without a sigh, 

Content to meet his coming fate ; 
Yet not without regret he died 
For work unfinished by his side, 
For steps arrested at the gate : 

The lofty purpose of a life 
A great achievement half achieved ; 
An all but conquered quest bereaved 
Of knightly prowess for the strife. 


And we who live and mourn our lack, 
Alas ! we live and pay in vain 
The usury of long-drawn pain 
To linger in his vanished track. 


In vain we listen for his steps, 
In vain we wait to hear him call 
Some favoured name in toom or hall 
Of wonted frequence on his lips. 

Where children crowd like clustered stars 
In their accustomed field or ground, 
A timid whisper passes round 
" Shall he not watch our mimic wars. 

Again ? His praise was ever sweet ; 
He loved us with a father's love, 
And if our prayers are heard above 
The lawn again will press his feet/ 1 


He harboured no uncomely thought 
Nor aught unworthy swayed his mind ; 
A lofty impulse was behind 
The smallest work his fingers wrought. 

His passions bound in silken thong 
Obeyed him like a beardless page, 
Except when fired with baresark rage 
At sight or sound of human wrong. 

He worked in no unwonted ways, 
No trumpet blare or gonfalon 
Flaunted his favoured scheme or plan 
Before a crowd's uplifted gaze. 

He laboured in his silent way 
To lift his brethren from the slough 
Wherein was sunk from stern to bow 
The ship that bore their shekinah. 

There were who fain would stay his hand, 
Fain mar day's work in stealthy night, 
Like slinking curs that shun the light 
And thieve in darkness o'er the land. 


Some were by envy led or hate ; 
While some were purblind, could not see 
Their suicidal hesitancy 
Provoked destruction soon or late. 


Some might not help but sting, like wasp 
Or scorpion crawling on the door 
Or ambushed in the matted floor 
To wait a child's unheeding clasp. 

And some impatient of a debt 
For good conferred in hour of need, 
For timely help by word or deed 
Ignoble minds that always fret. 

To feel unrendered gratitude, 
And fain would ease the groaning load 
By wronging most where most is owed, 
By haunting malice still pursued. 


With daring hand he touched the loom 
Of life that haply he might leave 
Some brighter threads for Fate to weave 
With sombre warp of human doom : 

A glorious future for his race 
The lengthened shadow of their past 
Transfigured on the landscape vast 
Of Western culture, Western grace : 

A wise acceptance of what is 
Divorced from faineant discontent, 
And girdle girt for each event 
That in the future might arise : 

And faithful service toward their Queen 
Rendered with free-born love and pride, 
Not with the show of those that hide 
Their mocking hate behind a screen. 


These were the dreams for which he lived 
And died, not all unrealised, 
These the achievements which he prized, 
His sons and heirs that have survived. 

He sought not glory or renown, 
They came to him as comes the shade 
Where e'er a vaulting roof is laid 
On builded walls in thor or town ; 


They came tp him as come they will 
For one who fights a doubtful fight 
With all the heart and all the might 
Of one assured to conquer still. 

God rest his soul I His be the meed 
Of those who strive to give their kind 
Their lives' best work, and leave behind 
Some pregnant germs of thought and deed. 



Of powers on earth, that make or mar man's life 
Is chiefest woman. Conscience, honour, truth, 
Ambition, love of peace or love of strife, 
Religion, chance that comes when life is smooth 
And turns its course awry, or fear of death, 
Are all most potent arms of destiny ; 
But woman crowns them all. From her a breath, 
A tone or token, touch, or glance of eye 
O'er masters all. O ! Woman ! thou art Fate 
Without Fate's blindness. Not divine art thou, 
Yet surely nearest God in form and state 
Of all his works. And when He carved thy brow, 
Sweet friend, and lit thine eyes with light of day 
He shed on thee his most divinest ray. 



I doubt if Heav'n has anything more fair, 

Nothing on earth is half so fair as she, 

Or sweet, or half so warm, or womanly. 

Not in Sicilian plains, or far Cashmere, 

Hesperian fields, or blue-viewed Nilgiri, 

Bloomed bud, or ripened fruit of richer hue 

Than on her sunny face and forehead free. 

No lethal weapons in her armoury 

She keeps, or barbgd words of gall and rue ; 

But kindly wit, and eyes of heavenly blue 

For winged glances ; witching r miles for friends, 

With many a nameless way of winning them. 

On her chaste bosom glistens not a gem, 

Her precious woman's heart makes rare amends, 


Three Sonnets 



When my Queen was first garlanded with light 
Of luscious womanhood and harmony 
Of soft, down curving lineaments, her eye 
Yet lacked the gleam of lurking fire ; the fright 
Of vague desire was yet unknown delight ; 
And eyelids drooped not yet with hesitancy. 
But when love came at last with conscious might, 
She stood a goddess in her majesty. 

Love came at last, the crown of all her grace 
And loveliness. I knew it by the gleam 
Of a strange light in her eye, and in her face 
The flush as of some happy waking dream : 
A most bewitching shyness ca0ie apace, 
To be my agony and joy supreme. 


And with the dawn of love there came the time, 
When lives thus intertwined are lived in fierce 
Relation momently. Unskilled to pierce 
The crust of strange emotion, or to climb 
With scatheless steps up the huge steeps sublime 
Of passion, doubts would come to us, and tears 
Of jealous rage to sink us in the slime 
Of dank despair, and slough of secret fears. 

Not often. Love had days informed with life 
Intense. World-ignorant, in sooth, we were ; 
Haply heart-ignorant ; we dared explore 
Love's utmost reaches, guideless in the strife 
With new desires ; nor feared to brave' the stir 
Of rolling waves on passion's restless shore. 



" After a storm cometh a calm " so says 
The proverb. From the crucible of pain 
Our live rose pure of dross. Melted in rain 
Were now the threatening clouds of former days : 
Nor did the genial sun withhold his rays. 
\ybuld we not wish to live those days again ? 
I know not. Ask those wounded in forays : 
" He jests at scars "- I miss the old refrain. 

And yet. And yet the storm, they say, hath power 
To please, and clouds a beauty of their own ; 
And the wild buffeting of winds is known 
To give delight to some, when storm-racks lower, 
And on the wind-ward strand are foam-flakes blown 
From angry surging seas in a misty shower. 


A Child's first knowledge of Death 

The haunting records of a far off clime, 
Conned through the mist of years bring back to me 
One dread dark night of sleepless memory, 
When all the spectral silence of the time, 
And strange house-noises of a ghastly chime 
And huge waves swashing on a view-less lea, 
And high winds soughing in a feath'ry tree, 
To my awed ears intoned a most weird rhyme. 

And in a well-known bed, a well-known face 
Waked not but slept, and all the house was hushed. 
And through the slow-drawn horrors of the night 
The dear-bought knowledge of his fallen race, 
On the distraught child's throbbing fancy rushed, 
With fearful sense of Death's imperious might. 


Day dawned at length without surcease of pain 
And dazed bewilderment. The child half saw, 
Half guessed mysterious rites with piteous awe ; 
But missed their dire portent ; he missed the chain 
That linked events ; scarce felt the primal stain 
Inevitable ; scarce perceived the law 
That must each life in swift progression draw, 
For dread fulfilment, down th'abysmal main. 

That fateful day and many days thereafter, 
Were blurred to the child's eye with mist of tears 
Unshed, or she with ill-simulate laughter, 
Lest loving hearts should guess forbidden fears. 
The ache abode with knowledge half attained : 
It was despair when certitude was gained. 



(An unhappy woman on her birthday). 

It may be six and twenty summers since 
My mother's life and mine form one grew twain, 
It may be more : I loath to note the train 
Of rolling time. From meanest clown to prince 
Of high degree the cycling years evince 
Some chance or change to all pleasure, or pain, 
Joy, grief, now grief, now joy, or hope or fear, 
Or love. But not for me from year to year 
A change of lot or life brings this sad day. 
Grief turned to stone, tears froze in polar ice, 
Sighs changed to moaning echo in the vale, 
Were fitter emblem than the flowers gay 
And blithesome, or these other gifts of price 
From faithful friends unconscious of my tele. 


England and India 

England t 'tis meet that or for weal or woe, 

In calm or storm, our chosen place should be 

Where honor calls us by the side of thee, 

Thy friend be friend to us, our bitt'rest foe 

The trait'rous knave who schemes thy overthrow : 

For like to Israel in captivity, 

We once were thralls till thou didst set us free 

And give us peace unknown from long ago. 

Aye, peace unknown ! when we were sore bestead, 
And grievous were the burdens that we bore ; 
But now if peace there be and rest divine, 
Good will ' tween men and peace, and all that's bred 
Therof when lawless might is feared no more, 
To thee we owe them all, these gifts are thine. 


And we hare shared thy travail and thy toil, 
And followed thee to feast and fray, and done 
Thy bidding, and our stalwart sons have gone 
Death-ward for thee in many an evil broil. 
And with their blood have moistened many a soil 
Rearing thy dauntless banner in the sun, 
And flank to flank with thee much glory won, 
To thy bright crown a not unworthy foil. 

Nay judge not harshly, England ! if there be 
That think not coward shame to rend their troth 
With treason's bodkin, an unworthy crew 
Shackled in heart, though thou hast set them free, 
Whose valour weareth out in wordy froth : 
Forgive them all, they know not what they do. 


The Realm of Woe 

Grim sorrow hath a kingdom of her own 
Begirt with weird depths of gloomy vale, 
Wherein hushed voices whisper many a tale 
Of wasted Hope, Ambition overthrown 
Ijjre yet her nimble sons to fame have grown, 
And Love with fruitless vigils waxen pale, 
And Friendship cut in twain by hand of bale, 
And Faith bewrayed, and Joy for ever flown. 

Her realm is thickly ribbed with avenues strait 
Of cypress tall and willows darkling seen 
For dust of dead desires, and in between 
Behold ! funereal Death with pensive gait 
Following close the sphinx-like form of Fate 

To pluck her poppy blossoms from the green. 


Oft have I travelled in that twilight land 

And found it passing strange with ghostly sights, 

And Sittings to and fro of spectral lights, 

In dark recesses of its bosky strand. 

There have I seen strange figures on the sand, 

And weary shadows crouching on the heights 

Of haunted hills, and in the bays and bights 

Have heard the boom of sobs on either hand. 

No Lethe wanders in this realm of woes ; 
But from the eyes of such as sojourn there, 
Drifted or driven like the hunted hare, 
Many a bitter stream of water flows. 
Though where they wend no mortal ever knows, 
And yet the luckless land is never bare. 



I stood before my buried youth and called : 
Come back ! come back ! now have I found the truth, 
I've found the worth of many verdured youth 
On this sad crag whereon I stand appalled 
To view its barren veins and fruitage bald : 
Come back my summer days ! for age uncouth 
With noisome weeds has strewn the garden smooth 
Where erst I held my rarest blooms unwalled. 

Too late ! too late I you reap as you have sown ; 
You should have cared in spring for winter needs ; 
But now is summer waned and autumn flown, 
Half hoar with early frost on upland meads ; 
'Tis late to turn, my loitering friend, move on, 
Nor leave behind your weary load of weeds.